According to news reports provided by leaks from the administration, the outlook is as grim as feared for federal funding of medical research. Although the Democratic majorities in Congress probably will not allow the figures to stand, President Bush will propose cutting $3 billion from the budget for the Department of Health and Human Services, freezing medical research. This is about double the amount he sought, unsuccessfully, to cut last year.
Even a freeze means a further reduction in research because it does not take into account inflation. The budget calls for a zero increase in the National Institutes of Health budget, a 7 percent decrease for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cuts in Medicare and Medicaid, cuts in funding for teaching hospitals -- and a 25 percent increase for abstinence-only education.