WASHINGTON, March 16, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-PA), a Senior Member on the House Appropriations Committee and a top Democrat on the Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and related agencies, released the following statement on Brain Awareness Week, celebrated March 14-20, 2016. Fattah is architect of the Fattah Neuroscience Initiative, a collaborative policy initiative seeking to achieve groundbreaking progress in understanding the human brain:
"This week I am proud to join with the neuroscience and medical communities around the globe in celebrating Brain Awareness Week. As one of the fiercest advocates in Congress for brain research, I hail this week as an important reminder of the progress we have made, and the challenges we still face in advocating for neuroscience funding and heightened awareness of the field.
"Since establishing the Fattah Neuroscience Initiative in 2011, I have worked with colleagues, partner organizations, and federal agencies across the country to bring new energy to the cause. We have seen incredible advancement in these five years; the BRAIN Initiative has spurred new research and findings, and the NIH and NSF have both received significant funding growth. In the last appropriations bill, I was proud to have helped include a $40.5 million increase for neuroscience funding at the National Science Foundation. This—coupled with a $85 million increase for the BRAIN Initiative through NIH—represent record funding levels and will allow us to continue our pioneering efforts to find cures and treatments to the hundreds of brain diseases and disorders we face. This federal support is especially important as we encounter the rising costs associated with treating brain disease; in 2015 the cost of caring for Alzheimer's patients was estimated to be $226 billion alone.
"Today, I joined my colleagues on the Appropriations Committee for hearings with NSF Director France Cordova and NIH Director Francis Collins where we had the opportunity to discuss our progress. This week I will also meet with Philadelphia scientists and researchers visiting Capitol Hill as part of Brain Awareness Week. Together, we represent a growing community dedicated to increasing our understanding of the human brain, and working collaboratively to ensure that brain science remains at the forefront of the medical and technology fields. I am continually inspired by the doctors, patients, and advocates I work with, and know that they are acting this week—and every week—to bring greater attention to neuroscience."
SOURCE Office of Congressman Chaka Fattah