The NHLBI is functioning under a Continuing Resolution with a decrease of 1.5 percent from FY 2011 allotment, and our fiscal situation remains tenuous. I would like to outline how we are dealing with this.
When we have a Continuing Resolution, we normally fund our ongoing commitments at 90 percent of the funds we expect to give them, and award the additional 10 percent when the budget is enacted. This allows us to address the situation we had last year (FY 2011), when the approved budget was 1 percent below FY 2010 and we awarded an additional 9 percent to non-competing applicants.
In FY 2011, our R01 payline was graduated – A0 at 16 percent, A1 at 12, A2 at 10 – but overall it was about 13 percent. This year (FY 2012), there will be a single payline for A0 and A1 applications and we are starting the year funding at the 10th percentile. We will maintain the advantage for Early Stage Investigators.
Similarly, we are starting the year funding K awards with priority scores of 19 or better – last year it was 30 or better – and P01s at 15, down from 20 last year.
All of these are extremely conservatively projected because of the possibility that we will experience dramatic changes in our funding. They are designed to ensure that we can keep our out-year commitments.
Current paylines can be found on our website under FY 2012 Funding and Operating Guidelines: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/funding/policies/operguid.htm.
The decreases in the programs are proportionate – the numbers come out differently when you look at priority scores versus percentiles. All of these will be improved proportionately as soon as we have a solid budget with which to work.
Since we are only 2 months into FY 2012 without a budget, we are not yet at a point where we can project funding for career development and training awards, which come from a different category than research project grants.
We are continuing to discuss where we may cut back to ensure that we will protect our core businesses of research and education.
With very best wishes,