At Solve M.E., our advocacy team is dedicated to opening new government funding avenues for ME/CFS, Long Covid, and post-infection disease research and care. Thanks in part to these efforts and the work of our advocacy community, the new Defense Appropriation again includes funding for the study of ME/CFS.
The FY23 Defense Appropriation provides funding to support therapeutic research related to medical threats, and treatments for Service Members in current and future battlefield settings. The managing agent for the funding opportunities is the Department of Defense Office of Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) at the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command (USAMRDC).
As part of ME/CFS Advocacy Day in April 2019, we requested that ME/CFS be added to the Peer-Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP) within the CDMRP. Our request was heard, and ME/CFS has been included each year that followed.
Funds included in this account are shared with many medical research programs at the discretion of the Department and support research across the full range of science and medicine, with an underlying goal of enhancing the health, care, and well-being of military Service Members, Veterans, retirees, and their family members.
Program oversight is provided by a programmatic panel with joint military service and interagency representation. Congressional appropriations for the PRMRP totaled $2.35 billion through FY19 and have supported over 1600 awards in over 155 different topic areas. Congress appropriated $360 million for the FY20 program to solicit proposals in 44 topic areas.
One of the focus areas for funding in FY23 is ME/CFS. In 2021, ME/CFS researchers received $2.5 million in funding from the PRMRP, and $1.6 million for ME/CFS research was awarded in 2022. We encourage ME/CFS researchers to apply for these awards again this year.
Not only is this an excellent opportunity for funding, but your application this year could determine funding availability for years to come. ME/CFS is at risk for removal from the program because the DOD received zero applications in that area last year.
In 2022, Solve M.E. hosted special guest, Cecilia Dupecher, PhD (Program Manager for PRMRP at the CDMRP) for an informational webinar designed to better inform and prepare the ME/CFS research community about PRMRP and the grant application process. Watch the webinar here.
To learn more and apply for a grant, visit the PRMRP website.