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Support crucial medical research

As Sen. Kelly Ayotte serves on the federal budget conference committee over the next few weeks, I urge her to make ending sequestration among her highest priorities.

Sequestration has already resulted in a $1.5 billion cut to the National Institutes of Health budget this year and a $209 million reduction to Food and Drug Administration. Without congressional action, sequestration will remain in place through 2021, cutting these and other programs is important to me, as I am one of the 500,000 to 1.5 million Americans living with Parkinson’s disease. These cuts will have a long-lasting impact on research programs, new treatments and therapies, and will ultimately delay a cure, not only for Parkinson’s Disease but also for every other chronic and progressive disease.

There is currently no treatment that prevents, slows, stops or cures Parkinson’s, which is estimated to cost $14.4 billion annually. It is critical that congress strengthen investment in priorities that support the work of the broader medical research community, as well as patients and their families. Additional cuts to federal research funding could also result in a loss of $4.7 million for New Hampshire, which may have a devastating impact on the local economy. Ending sequestration and supporting medical research funding and innovation are investments in our country’s future. I, along with other members of the Parkinson’s community in New Hampshire will be watching their leadership on this issue very closely.

John Trythall

Merrimack

Parkinson’s Action Network