percent (1.6 percent in 2007) of total NIH funding—was established in 2004 and is now a statutory requirement, with its own line-item funding. The earlier IOM committee also recommended that the NIH director have a Special Projects Program, independent of the budgets of the individual NIH institutes and centers, to support initiation of high-risk, innovative research. NIH has now established a Director’s Pioneer Award Program and a Director’s New Innovator Award for purposes similar to those the committee envisioned (IOM, 2003; NIH, 2008a, 2008b).

Related Recommendation

  1. Congress should establish a new, strategic initiative fund to enable the secretary to support cross-agency and cross-departmental activities that exhibit innovation in responding to twenty-first century challenges, and to respond quickly to new, unforeseen, or expanding public health threats.


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FDA Subcommittee on Science and Technology. 2008. FDA science and mission at risk. Washington, DC: FDA Science Board.

GAO (Government Accountability Office). 2003. Executive reorganization authority: Balancing executive and congressional roles in shaping the federal government’s structure. Washington, DC: GAO.

HHS (Department of Health and Human Services). 2000. Healthy people 2010. Washington, DC: HHS.

HHS. 2007. Strategic plan, 2007-2012. Washington, DC: HHS.

HHS. 2008a. 500-day plan information. (accessed October 27, 2008).

HHS. 2008b. President’s management agenda (PMA). (accessed November 12, 2008).

IOM (Institute of Medicine). 2003. Enhancing the vitality of the National Institutes of Health: Organizational change to meet new challenges. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

Ix, M. 2007. Advancing public health systems research: Research priorities and gaps. Washington, DC: AcademyHealth.

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