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Sunday, August 2, 2015

Federal Support for Autism Research

The Politics of Autism includes an extensive discussion of federal support for autism research.  The Government Accountability has a new report on the topic.  The summary:
Although federal funding for autism research fluctuated from fiscal years 2008 through 2012, it increased overall during this period, from approximately $169 million in fiscal year 2008 to $245 million in fiscal year 2012—about a 45 percent increase (about a 37 percent increase when adjusted for inflation to fiscal year 2012 dollars). Over this time period, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) consistently provided the majority of autism research funding—between about 76 and 83 percent of the total funding awarded each fiscal year. The highest funding levels were in fiscal years 2009 and 2010, in part, as a result of additional funds appropriated to NIH under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. While overall funding increased, federal funding varied by each of the seven research areas specified in the Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee’s (IACC) strategic plan. These research areas are biology, treatments and interventions, causes, diagnosis, infrastructure and surveillance, services, and lifespan issues. The following figure shows the changes in funding by fiscal year for each of the seven research areas, as well as the overall average annual percent change in funding for each research area.