The fiscal year 2023 appropriations process is underway. The House Committee on Appropriations released and advanced this year's appropriations bills and associated reports.
The Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies bill includes $9.75 million in funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Hospitals Promoting Breastfeeding program. This is level funding from last year, but it isn't enough.
As we enter into the fifth month of a serious and devastating infant formula shortage, we need to do everything we can to protect infant nutrition security. Increasing funding for this line item is an urgent and important step. We hope you'll join us in the call for increased funding via our easy action tool for individuals, and with our organizational sign-on letter.
The Hospitals Promoting Breastfeeding line item is the top policy priority for the USBC, but it certainly isn't the only provision that impacts infant feeding. We are encouraged by funding included for an analysis of the macroeconomic, health, and social costs of U.S. breastfeeding rates and national breastfeeding goals. Funding relevant to the lactation field is also included in several additional appropriations bills.
A detailed analysis of funded provisions in these bills can be found on the Federal Appropriations for Breastfeeding webpage, including funding for the Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health program, WIC breastfeeding peer counselor program, and beyond. The webpage traces program funding levels at each step in the federal budget process.
The House appropriations bills and associated reports also include several unfunded directives:
Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill report:
State, Foreign Operations bill report:
Once the House and Senate have each passed their appropriations bills, they must be "conferenced" to work out any differences between the two versions. House-Senate conference committees make final determinations and prepare a Conference Report. The Conference Report is then passed by the House and the Senate and sent to the President to be signed. All appropriations bills must be completed by the end of the fiscal year on September 30, or Congress will have to pass a continuing resolution to keep the government funded at the start of FY 2023 on October 1.
The USBC will continue to mobilize support for funding that helps human milk feeding families and will be sure to keep you updated at all stages of the federal budget process. We are so grateful for your partnership, engagement, and support. Thank you!
~ the USBC team
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