There are many reasons to invest in medical research strongly and consistently each year, including that chronic diseases cost our economy billions of dollars annually and there is a proven return on NIH-funded research.

Chronic Disease Infographic

Proven ROI Infographic













  • The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the primary agency that supports medical research in the United States and the world’s premier medical research agency. In 2018, its budget is only beginning to recover from more than a decade of decreased and flat-funding.
  • The NIH has significantly less purchasing power today than it did in 2003. This represents countless lost opportunities for making progress against our most vexing diseases and threatening America’s global leadership in biomedical research and the life sciences.
  • There are over 7,000 diseases and treatments for only 500 of them. There is so much more work to be done to bring hope to patients and families.
  • Only one in five research grant proposals to the NIH receive funding despite the caliber of the proposal. A success rate of 20 percent means that a lot of innovative research is not being done and that talented scientists are not being supported.
  • Today in the United States, 5.7 million Americans – more than the populations of New Hampshire and Iowa combined – are living with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • In 2018, there will be an estimated 1,735,350 new cancer cases diagnosed and 609,640 cancer deaths in the United States. And while research has helped reduce the death rate from childhood cancer by a remarkable 67 percent over the last 40 years, it remains the leading disease-related cause of death in children 5-14 years old.
  • Nearly 92.1 million U.S. adults are living with some form of cardiovascular disease or the after-effects of stroke.
  • Medicare, Medicaid and other federal health spending currently account for 26 percent of the federal budget. Alzheimer’s and other dementias will cost the nation $277 billion in 2018. The estimated annual cost of cancer care today is $147.3 billion.  And cardiovascular disease will cost another $555 billion in medical expenses and lost productivity.