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Stroke Advocacy Network eNews - April 2016

IN THIS ISSUE: New CEO | Increase Medical Funding | Improved Action Center

CEO Robyn Moore

National Stroke Association Welcomes New CEO

Join us in welcoming veteran nonprofit leader Robyn Moore as the new CEO. She brings more than 20 years of experience in the nonprofit healthcare industry to National Stroke Association.

Robyn is passionate about stroke having witnessed first-hand the life-changing impact on her father and family when he survived a stroke seven years ago. Robyn is looking forward to serving the stroke community’s critical need for awareness of life-saving stroke warning signs and providing resources to guide and support survivors and their caregivers.

Moore understands the critical role that the Stroke Advocacy Network, plays in achieving our goals. “I want our Stroke Advocacy Network to be the strongest and most robust voice in the country advocating for stroke survivors,” said Robyn. “And I want National Stroke Association to be the ‘go to’ stroke resource for policy makers and our elected representatives.”

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Congress Considering Funding Increase for Medical Research

Spring is here! In Washington, D.C., that means the cherry blossoms are blooming and it’s budget season on Capitol Hill. Right now, members of Congress are determining how to allocate money among government agencies for the next year – and they’re considering several measures that will help stroke survivors. Last December, thanks in large part to the actions of Stroke Advocacy Network members, legislators agreed to increase funding for medical research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) by $2 billion dollars for 2016. This means more money is now going to research programs that directly support stroke survivors. It also shows that Congress is listening to our message and prioritizing medical research and innovation.

As part of this additional funding, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), where most federal stroke-related research takes place, saw a $91 million increase. Furthermore, a brain-mapping project called the Brain Research through Advanced Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative received $20 million in additional funding. These substantial increases in funding for NINDS and the BRAIN Initiative at NIH will help researchers better understand and develop new treatments for stroke.

But we can’t stop here. We need to make sure the government continues to support stroke research and innovation next year and beyond. In February, President Obama released the final budget proposal of his presidency. While not legally binding, the president’s annual budget request is important in that it outlines his administration’s priorities for the year. In his budget, Obama reaffirmed his strong commitment to NIH funding, asking for an additional $1.3 billion for 2017. He also sought significant increases for the BRAIN Initiative and the new Precision Medicine Initiative, which strives to provide care and treatment in a way that is more personalized to fit the specific characteristics and needs of individual patients.

Now, the Senate and the House must each produce their own budget proposals and then work to find an agreement on how to fund the government next year. Funding for the NIH is at the forefront of this discussion. Through votes and statements on other critical legislation, such as a comprehensive research and treatment bill called the 21st Century Cures Act, members of Congress on both sides of the aisle and in both the House and Senate have publicly expressed support for mandatory funding increases for NIH. Clearly, there is bipartisan momentum behind strengthening investment in medical research.

But Democrats and Republicans disagree on how to pay for these increased investments, and these disagreements could ultimately stall the process altogether. We need to make sure members of Congress understand how critical these programs are to stroke survivors and their families. Only through speaking out can we ensure they continue to work toward finding a solution. You can be part of this effort—send a letter to your Senators and your Representative today!

Take action


Take Action in Our New, Mobile Friendly State Action Centers

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National Stroke Association’s digital team has updated our state action center to make taking action easier than ever. Our state action centers are more user friendly—making it easier to take action and work seamlessly across mobile and tablet devices.

Now is the time to add your voice. See what’s happening close to home in our State Action Center. We’re advocating for issues in a number of states such as:

  • Prescription Synchronization
  • Stroke Systems of Care
  • Interstate Medical Licensure
  • Drug Pricing Transparency

Your voice is critical to ensure that your legislators and policy makers understand that stroke is a priority. After you’ve taken a few minutes to do your part, ask your family and friends to join the Stroke Advocacy Network. The more voices we add to the conversation, the greater impact we can have for stroke survivors and their families.

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For over 30 years we have been the trusted source for free resources and education to the stroke community. Together, we empower survivors and their circle of care to thrive after stroke. Make your tax-deductible donation today to support the growing needs of the stroke community.