Brain Injury Association of America: Legislative News
Here is the latest legislative news report from the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA):
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Act Reauthorization 2013
On Wednesday, March 13, 2013, the TBI Act, H.R. 1098, was introduced by Reps. Pascrell and Rooney, co-chairs of the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force. This bill will reauthorize the current programs relating to TBI and also will move the state grant and protection and advocacy grant programs from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau to another agency with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The move acknowledges the impact of TBI across the age span, including older adults and returning service members/veterans. The Congressional Brain Injury Task Force recommends relocating the program to better coordinate with federal agencies regarding long-term services and supports available to individuals with other disabilities, particularly the long-term services and supports provision of the Affordable Care Act. BIAA thanks Reps. Pascrell and Rooney for introducing this important legislation. Please call your Member of Congress and ask them to co-sponsor H.R. 1098 today!
President's Budget FY 2014
This week, President Obama released his proposed fiscal year (FY) 2014 budget. In the budget, the President proposed to cancel sequestration and replace it with an additional $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction through new revenue, $400 billion in health savings, Social Security changes, and $200 billion in discretionary cuts split evenly between defense and nondefense programs. It is unlikely Congress will pass the president's budget.
Also in the President's proposed FY2014 budget, BIAA is pleased to report that programs authorized by the TBI Act, including the HRSA Federal TBI Program and the CDC's important TBI work have both been recommended to receive at least the same funding found in FY12 final and FY13 CR appropriations bills, $10 million for HRSA and just under $7 million for CDC.
The CDC collects data, links both military and civilian populations with TBI services, increases public awareness, and conducts public health research. The HRSA Federal TBI Program funds 21 states to improve systems coordination access to care for people with brain injury.
The budget recommends $110 million in funds for the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) of the U.S. Department of Education. NIDRR administers grants to the TBI Model Systems which is a collection of research centers located across the United States that conduct disability and rehabilitation research. The TBI Model Systems are the only source of non-proprietary longitudinal data on what happens to people with brain injury. The TBI Model Systems are a key source of evidence-based medicine, and serve as a "proving ground" for future researchers.
BIAA will continue to work to ensure that legislators understand the importance of these programs and how they affect the 3.5 million people across the United States with brain injury.