Signed Budget Supports Health & Wellness: Harkin

The appropriations bill signed into law Jan. 17 provides nearly $1 billion for the Prevention and Public Health Fund, which Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin created in the Affordable Care Act.

U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Chair Tom Harkin praised the health and wellness funding that is included in the FY2014 appropriations bill signed into law Jan. 17 by President Obama. It funds federal operations through Sept. 30, 2014.

"The omnibus agreement advances my long-standing priority of shifting American health care from a sick-care system to a genuine health care system emphasizing wellness, prevention, and public health. I am particularly encouraged that resources for the Prevention and Public Health Fund, which I created in the Affordable Care Act, are dedicated 100 percent to prevention and wellness, including major new funding for the CDC to prevent diabetes and heart disease, and to ramp up anti-smoking initiatives," Sen. Harkin, D-Iowa, said after the bill, H.R. 3547, passed the Senate.

The bill funds OSHA at $552 million for this fiscal year, NIOSH at $180 million, and MSHA at $376 million, AIHA Government Affairs Director Aaron Trippler has reported.

Harkin’s statement said the bill includes a $1 billion increase for the National Institutes of Health, launches and $80 million Community Prevention program to help communities build partnerships around better health, and funds an initiative to study new ways to prevent and cure Alzheimer's disease. The bill includes a $20 million increase for CDC's Office of Smoking and Health.

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