AAAAI Coordinates Effort to Support Food Allergy Research

May 10, 2019

AAAAI Presents Congressional Briefing on Food Allergy Research, Leads Effort for Increased Federal Funding

The AAAAI will be joining Representative Ro Khanna (D-CA) and Representative Phil Roe, MD, (R-TN) for a congressional briefing on food allergy research on May 22. AAAAI Immediate Past-President Robert A. Wood, MD, FAAAAI, will join as a speaker, as well as one of Dr. Wood’s food allergy patients who will talk about her life-threatening food allergies, and her successful participation in food allergy research.

The AAAAI is also proud to have worked with Rep. Khanna on several recent efforts to bolster support of federal funding for food allergy research, including the following:

•    Rep. Khanna and Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH) led a request to the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (LHHS) Subcommittee on Appropriations, regarding an increase in funding for the Consortium on Food Allergy Research. The letter of request was signed by 30 bipartisan members of Congress.

•    Rep. Khanna and Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC) led a request that the LHHS Subcommittee include a statement of programmatic support to be appended as Report Language to the FY20 bill appropriating funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The letter of request was signed by 31 bipartisan members of Congress and last week the committee released its report which includes the requested language in support of food allergy research.

•    Rep. Khanna and Rep. Roe led a request signed by 34 members of Congress for support of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense to include food allergies on the list of conditions eligible for research funding under the Department of Defense Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program.

•    Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) is leading this effort in the U.S. Senate and has submitted the same three requests for consideration during the Senate appropriations process.

The AAAAI thanks the following organizations for supporting our outreach with Representatives Khanna, Roe, Gonzales, and McHenry, and Senator Blumenthal:

American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
Allergy and Asthma Network
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America
Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team  
Food Allergy Research & Education
International FPIES Association

In addition to the food allergy briefing, on May 22 the AAAAI will be represented by a dozen physician members and leaders during visits to Capitol Hill to talk to nearly 30 representatives and senators about food allergy research funding. They will also be seeking support of committee leaders and their own Congressional delegations to join as co-sponsors of H.R. 2468, the School-Based Allergies and Asthma Management Program Act, an AAAAI-led collaborative initiative recently introduced by Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and Rep. Roe. Finally, information on the important role of verification of patient reported penicillin allergy in the crucial fight against anti-microbial resistance will be discussed. Members of the Hart Health Strategies team and the AAAAI’s expert consultants on legislative and regulatory advocacy will be facilitating these visits. 


April 4, 2019

AAAAI Coordinates Senate Efforts to Support Food Allergy Research
In addition to our work with Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) and others in the House of Representatives to increase food allergy research funding in the FY 2020 federal budget, AAAAI is now also working with Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT). An AAAAI-led group sign on letter has been sent to Senate appropriations leaders and AAAAI is working with Sen. Blumenthal to seek additional senate support for federal investment in food allergy research. The American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI), Allergy & Asthma Network, Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team, Food Allergy Research & Education, and the International FPIES Association have joined the effort. Won't you as well?  Read the group sign on letter here and find out how you can help today.


How you can help
The AAAAI is working with Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) to request that food allergy research be prioritized across the federal government. The AAAAI developed this group letter and advocacy outreach campaign in support of requests made by Sen. Blumenthal to the Senate Appropriations Committee. The AAAAI was joined by the ACAAI, the Allergy & Asthma Network, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team, Food Allergy Research & Education, and the International FPIES Association in asking for:


• Robust funding for the Consortium of Food Allergy Research (CoFAR) within the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID);
• Report language reflecting the importance of trans-NIH research on food allergies; and
• Food allergies to be added to the list of conditions eligible for research under the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP).

Senator Blumenthal is in the process of contacting all U.S. Senators to invite them to sign on in support. The AAAAI has also contacted every senator to request they cosign the appropriations request letters, as well as to share the group support letter.

Add Your Voice
Please consider adding your voice to amplify AAAAI’s and our stakeholder partners’ message. You can contact your two senators and urge them to cosign the letters to the appropriations committee leadership. The deadline to cosign Sen. Blumenthal’s request letter is Monday, April 8. Therefore, there’s no time like the present to voice your support.

You can look up your Senators HERE and then call or email.  

To Call:
The senate office phone numbers are available at the link provided above. Alternatively, you may reach the United States Senate switchboard operator at (202) 224-3121 and ask to be transferred to your senator’s office. Once you are connected, you can ask for the person who handles health issues. If they are not available, feel free to leave a message on their voice mail and make the following points:
•    I’m a constituent physician from _________
•    On behalf of my patients with food allergies, I want to let you know about bipartisan appropriations requests supporting food allergy research.
•    Senator Blumenthal has circulated draft letters to the Senate Appropriations Committee and is seeking additional signatures.
•    I’m hoping you will consider cosigning these requests.
•    If you have any questions, please contact Alison Council with Sen. Blumenthal who is leading this effort.
•    Thank you for your consideration.

To Email:  
A contact link is provided for each senator HERE and will take you directly to your senator’s webpage with instructions to send an email. Many times, you will be asked to populate a form with your information and message. A sample message follows which may be personalized to cut and paste into the contact form.

I’m a constituent physician writing on behalf of my patients with food allergies to request that you cosign bipartisan letters to the Senate Appropriations Committee requesting support for food allergy research. Senator Richard Blumenthal is circulating draft letters and seeking additional signatures. The letters request food allergy language in the Labor/HHS report, increased funding for the Consortium on Food Allergy Research (CoFAR) at NIH, and to add ‘food allergies’ to the list of conditions eligible to be studied under the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP). Each year, more than 200,000 Americans require emergency medical care for allergic reactions to food – equivalent to one trip to the emergency room every three minutes. I appreciate your consideration of my request. If you have any questions, please contact Alison Council with Sen. Blumenthal who is leading this effort. Thank you for your consideration.
 

March 21, 2019

The AAAAI is working with Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) to request that food allergy research be prioritized across the federal government. The AAAAI developed this group letter and advocacy outreach campaign in support of bipartisan requests made by Reps. Khanna, Phil Roe, MD (R-TN), Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH), and Patrick McHenry (R-NC) to the House Appropriations Committee. Specifically, these Members of Congress and the AAAAI were joined by the ACAAI, the Allergy & Asthma Network, the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Connection Team, and the International FPIES Association in asking for:

• Robust funding for the Consortium of Food Allergy Research (CoFAR) within the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID);
• Report language reflecting the importance of trans-NIH research on food allergies; and
• Food allergies to be added to the list of conditions eligible for research under the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP).

Representatives Khanna, McHenry, Gonzalez, and Roe have sent a Dear Colleague letter to all members of Congress to invite them to sign on in support. The AAAAI is also contacting every congressional representative to share the group support letter and request that they cosign the appropriations request letters.

Add Your Voice
Please consider adding your voice to amplify AAAAI’s and our stakeholder partners’ message. You can contact your congressional representative and urge them to cosign the letters to the appropriations committee leadership. Members of congress must make their requests to the appropriations committee before the end of March. Therefore, there’s no time like the present to voice your support.

You can look up your Representative HERE and then call or email.  

To Call:
You may reach the U.S. House of Representatives switchboard operator at (202) 224-3121 and ask to be transferred to your representative’s office. Once you are connected, you can ask for the person who handles health issues. If they are not available, feel free to leave a message on their voice mail and make the following points:

  • I’m a constituent physician from _________
  • On behalf of my patients with food allergies, I want to let you know about bipartisan appropriations requests supporting food allergy research.
  • Reps. Khanna, McHenry, Gonzalez and Roe circulated a Dear Colleague with the draft letters and are seeking additional signatures.
  •  I’m hoping you will consider cosigning these requests.
  • If you have any questions, please contact Will McKelvey, with Rep. Ro Khanna who is leading this effort.
  • Thank you for your consideration.


To Email:  
Your representative’s website likely includes a “contact me” tab (or you may see a small letter icon next to their picture) which allows you to populate a form with your information and message. A sample message follows which may be personalized to cut and paste into the contact form.

I’m a constituent physician writing on behalf of my patients with food allergies to request that you cosign bipartisan letters to the House Appropriations Committee requesting support for food allergy research. Reps. Khanna, McHenry, Gonzalez and Roe have circulated a Dear Colleague with the draft letters and are seeking additional signatures. The letters request food allergy language in the Labor/HHS report, increased funding for the Consortium on Food Allergy Research (CoFAR) at NIH, and to add ‘food allergies’ to the list of conditions eligible to be studied under the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP). Each year, more than 200,000 Americans require emergency medical care for allergic reactions to food – equivalent to one trip to the emergency room every three minutes. I appreciate your consideration of my request. If you have any questions, please contact Will McKelvey, with Rep. Ro Khanna who is leading this effort.

 

Close-up of pine tree branches in Winter Close-up of pine tree branches in Winter