ADA: We're 'Alarmed' by Trump Budget Proposal

April 5, 2017
Sarah Handzel, BSN, RN

President Donald Trump has proposed reductions in funding for several health institutions in his 2018 budget, including the National Institutes of Health. Now, the American Dental Association has weighed in on those proposed cuts. Gary Roberts, D.D.S., president of the ADA, has said the organization “is alarmed” by the proposed cuts, adding that the nation’s oral health will suffer as a result.

President Donald Trump's 2018 budget proposal includes funding cuts to the National Institutes of Health.

In response to the Trump administration’s proposed budget for 2018, the American Dental Association has released a statement expressing its concern regarding the reduction in funds for several institutions, including the National Institutes of Health.

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Gary Roberts, D.D.S and President of the ADA, said in the statement, “The American Dental Association is alarmed by some of the proposals in the Trump Administration’s fiscal year 2018 budget. The president’s proposed cuts could have severe negative impacts on oral health research and access. The unprecedented $5.8 billion in cuts aimed at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the nation’s premier center for health care research and funding, for example, would dramatically impact NIH’s core mission.”

He continued, “The Association is also concerned by the White House proposal to push for NIH ‘reorganization.’ Though the budget included no details, the ADA urges Administration officials and Congress to retain the independence of individual institutes. As an independent agency within NIH, the National Institute for Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) has a long history of funding vital research that has led to improvements in oral health for all Americans.”

In the administration’s proposal, funding for the NIH would be reduced by 20 percent, or $6 billion. Other national organizations, such as the Department of Health and Human Services, could see annual budgets reduced by as much as 18 percent. Such cuts could severely impact improvements to dental access and care for underserved and at-risk population groups across the nation.

“On behalf of the ADA and its 161,000 member dentists, I urge congressional appropriators to consider the Trump Administration’s budget proposal very carefully. Cutting health funding so dramatically would be a huge step backwards after years of progress in improving the nation’s oral health,” says Roberts.

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