The FAIR (Fair Allocations In Research) Foundation is attempting to change how research money is allocated among different diseases. According to FAIR’s website, The FAIR Foundation was formed because of the inequities in disease research spending by Congress and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). FAIR feels that funding for AIDS research is unfairly higher than all other diseases. According to FAIR’s website, there is an inequity in the favoritism given AIDS over all other diseases, including the sixteen diseases that kill a million more Americans than AIDS annually.
Dr. Richard Darling is the founder of the FAIR foundation. The mission of the foundation is fair and equitable distribution of research funds by our government for all diseases. A disease’s mortality rate shall be given emphasis in determining allocations, and other secondary factors shall be utilized to insure diseases that cause great suffering but have low mortality rates will also receive significantly increased funding. Also, pre- and post-transplant care of patients, organ and tissue donor awareness and the need for new donor policies in the USA to reverse America’s organ-donor crisis.
The difference in the amount of NIH research money budgeted to the diseases in comparison to the amount of deaths from the disease is beyond substantial. NIH spends nearly ten percent of funding dollars towards the research of AIDS. According to FAIR’s research, approximately $3040 is spent on AIDS research for every one death caused by the disease. In comparison, only $37 is spent on cardiovascular disease per death caused by the disease.
It appears that AIDS is such a high-profile disease that it is receiving an unfair amount of research funding dollars. With so many celebrities helping to raise awareness of the disease, we may have unknowingly taken attention away from other diseases that are in desperate need for additional funding so that lives can be saved.
FAIR claims that the new infection rate of AIDS in the United States is below one percent. Furthermore, better drugs are increasing the life expectancy of those infected with the disease. In essence, not enough AIDS deaths are occurring per year to substantiate the amount of money being spent on AIDS research.
Fair is not suggesting that AIDS research stop all together, only that research dollars be distributed in such a way that is proportionate to the amount of deaths from the disease.
For more information about The FAIR Foundation, check out their website listed in the resources below.