Prevention Fund Letter

March 11, 2016

The Honorable Fred Upton
Chairman
House Energy & Commerce Committee

The Honorable Frank Pallone
Ranking Member
House Energy & Commerce Committee

The Honorable Joseph Pitts
Chairman
House Energy & Commerce Committee

The Honorable Gene Green
Ranking Member
Sub-Committee on Health
House Energy & Commerce Committee

Dear Chairmen Upton and Pitts and Ranking Members Pallone and Green:

On behalf of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, a non-partisan organization representing over 75,000 registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) and dietetic technicians, registered (RDTRs), we are writing to voice our strong opposition to the language repealing the Prevention and Public Health Fund (the "Fund") in H.R. 4725, which the Energy and Commerce Committee will mark-up on Monday, March 14th. We urge you to oppose passage of this legislation or to strike the repeal of the Fund – which would eliminate $15.5 billion in future funding (FY16-FY25) for critical public health and prevention activities.

In its first six years, money appropriated from the Fund has allowed state and local health departments to increase obesity prevention programs, improve food-borne illness prevention efforts, and improve breastfeeding rates across the country. The Fund, which is allocated by the Appropriations Committee, is the sole dedicated funding source for preventing chronic diseases in the country.

Our members, and your constituents, play a critical role in the successful planning and implementation of a variety of nutrition programs receiving support from the Fund. These efforts ensure that millions of Americans have the information and education that they need in order to make healthy choices for themselves and their families. In 2014, monies appropriated from the Fund enabled state health departments to improve breastfeeding support in communities across the country, and to collaborate with land grant universities in counties with obesity rates above 40 percent on evidence-based strategies to reduce chronic disease.

It is essential that Congress continue to invest in our public health infrastructure, and we urge you again to oppose H.R. 4725, and the repeal of the Prevention and Public Health Fund. We cannot afford to turn back on the progress that has been made.

Sincerely,

Dr. Evelyn F. Crayton, RDN, LDN, FAND
President, 2015-2016
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics