With the government fiscal year ending in a few short weeks and Covid continuing to impact the country, new government funding opportunities are plentiful for organizations supporting both the pandemic response and other areas of interest in the new Senate appropriations bill which will head for a vote by September 30, 2022.
One of the most prominent questions for those in Washington remains how to respond to the ongoing pandemic. Senate Democrats unveiled their version of the Department of Health and Human Services appropriations bill, which included $16,000,000,000 in emergency funding for the development and procurement of diagnostics, warm base manufacturing, next generation technology development and funding for COVID-19. $9,000,000,000 will be directed to BARDA for vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics. According to the Committee, this funding will be allocated towards the procurement of additional vaccines, as well as the diversification of the nation’s therapeutic portfolio. This will function as a safeguard for future virus surges, or the emergence of a more deadly Covid variant.
The funding can also be used to support domestic research and development, as well as manufacturing, improving access to treatments that are more effective against the latest coronavirus variants. At least $750,000,000 is provided for research and clinical trials for vaccines focused on emerging coronavirus strains and to support domestic manufacturing capacity. The funding can also be used for the development of a next-generation pan-COVID vaccine that offers broader protection than current vaccines, replacing our need to develop a new vaccine for each new variant.
Senator Murray stated,
“This flexible funding will allow the department to procure additional vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics, and develop next-generation vaccines that can finally bring the COVID-19 pandemic to an end. It will ensure that the country will not suffer a catastrophic setback in the face of future virus surges or the emergence of a new, more deadly six variant. The funding can also be used for any emerging disease with potential for creating a pandemic.”
8 Key Areas for New Government Funding Opportunities
- Domestic Diagnostic Manufacturing
- Next-Generation Medical Technologies
- Strengthening Domestic Medical Manufacturing and Production
- Infectious Diseases
- Infectious Disease Outbreaks with Pandemic Potential
- Medical Distribution Supply Chain Task Force
- Re-Envisioning the SNS
- Antibiotic and Antimicrobial Resistance Research
1. Domestic Diagnostic Manufacturing
The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated the need for warm-base manufacturing for U.S. diagnostic companies. The Committee encourages ASPR to pursue public-private partnerships with U.S. diagnostic manufacturers to invest in warm-base manufacturing of over-the-counter tests for the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) and public health surveillance.
2. Next-Generation Medical Technologies
The Committee urges BARDA to continue investments in promising new medical technologies to secure the next generation of vaccines, diagnostics, and therapeutics to prepare the country to respond more quickly and effectively to current and future pathogens of pandemic potential. BARDA is urged to support a variety of vaccine platforms that improve vaccine immunogenicity, durability, tolerability, as well as thermostability, storage, and transport.
3. Strengthening Domestic Medical Manufacturing and Production
4. Infectious Diseases
5. Infectious Disease Outbreaks with Pandemic Potential
6. Medical Distribution Supply Chain Task Force
7. Re-Envisioning the SNS
The Committee recognizes that efforts are underway to review and propose a path forward for the SNS, as directed by Public Law 117–103, and awaits the release of these plans.
8. Antibiotic and Antimicrobial Resistance Research
With antimicrobial and antibiotic resistance becoming a key aspect of life sciences research, the appropriation committee has allocated no less that $565,000,000 to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), to investigate the mechanisms of resistance, therapeutics, and vaccines. Additionally, the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Diseases (NCEZID) has been allocated $793,772,000, where $212,000,000 will be allocated towards an antibiotic resistance initiative.
Which of these Government Funding Opportunities are you interested in learning more about? Let us know in the comments.