The House on October 10 approved, 385-2, a bill (H.R. 762) to authorize research on lupus. Sponsored by Rep. Carrie Meek (D-FL), the bill would authorize an unspecified amount of funding to expand and intensify research on lupus at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The bill also would authorize an unspecified amount of funding for programs that would deliver services to individuals and their families. The measure was approved by the House Commerce Committee on September 26 (see The Source, 10/6/00, p. 6).
During floor debate, Rep. Meek stated that lupus afflicts women nine times more than it does men and that its most significant impact is felt by women during the childbearing years. Pointing to the need for the legislation, Rep. Meek said, “NIH each year has done something toward the application of research to lupus, but now we are asking that this be a mandate of NIH to be sure that they expand research efforts, so it will make it much easier to diagnose this.”