FDA Maintains Funds for Women’s Health Office
FDA on Friday announced that it will fully fund the agency's Office of Women's Health in fiscal year 2007, the Washington Post reports (Weiss, Washington Post, 3/18).
According to an unnamed, high-level FDA official, FDA had intended to withhold $1.2 million of the $4 million Congress allocated to the women's health office for FY 2007, and the remaining $2.8 million already has been allocated or spent. The official, who was not authorized to speak publicly, said the decision meant the women's health office effectively would have had to stop future projects this year.
The Bush administration for several years has requested and Congress has allocated $4 million annually for the office, which was created in 1994 (Weiss, Washington Post, 2/27). FDA's 2007 operating plan, which was released late Friday, provides $4 million for the women's health office, according to the Post.
"It is disappointing that on the important issue of women's health, FDA had to be persuaded to simply maintain the funding level that was requested by the [Bush] administration and provided by Congress," Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), chair of the House appropriations committee that funds FDA, said, adding that at the same time, it is "very gratifying that the FDA reversed course."
Phyllis Greenberger, president of the Society for Women's Health Research, said the women's health office "does a tremendous job protecting and advancing the health of women through policy, science and outreach," adding, "Thankfully, its efforts will continue" (Washington Post, 3/18).