Health Futures

is a government relations, public policy and strategic development firm representing clients in the dynamic new world of predictive and personalized health care. We specialize in navigating the labyrinth of legislators, regulators, health care providers, patient advocates, third-party payers, and journalists who will ultimately determine if innovation succeeds or fails.

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Setting the Record Straight: Defense Health Research


by Mark Vieth, Senior Vice President

The September 23 edition of PoliticoPRO included an article on defense health research programs administered by the Department of Defense (DOD).  The article discusses the advocacy strategy employed by our client, the Defense Health Research Consortium, and quotes me, the Consortium’s coordinator.

Apart from the misleading headline and its mischaracterization of these programs as earmarks, or a plot to circumvent budget spending caps, the article discusses in depth the value of these programs to a wide range of constituencies and the Members of Congress who represent them.  The article discusses how the Consortium led the charge to protect these programs earlier this year when they came under attack during Senate consideration of the National Defense Authorization Act.

We are proud to represent the Defense Health Research Consortium, and to work with the patients, veterans groups, providers and research institutions that support these vital programs.  We disagree with those who argue that the programs have little or no military value – just ask any veteran suffering from a medical disorder or active-duty service member whose child is suffering from a rare disease whether these programs are relevant to their service to our country! 

All too often, articles like this dehumanize the real-life impact of federal research programs and focus solely on the dollars.  Working with the organizations represented by the Consortium, we have seen, first hand, how the medical research funded by the DoD has transformed the lives of everyday Americans.


Diana Haberkamp

Mark, thank you for all your work and for setting the record straight! I was dismayed to see them mischaracterize the funds. They’re not technically apart of the Defense budget are they?


Carolyn Best

Every moment spent defending these programs is a moment very well spent. The medical advances made because of these programs have outpaced the results of funding from other organizations. The CDMRP approach to funding research, which has led to new and better treatments, new tools for better diagnosis and prognosis, new understanding that could lead to increased prevention - all made to benefit our service members, veterans, their families, and the American public - are the right thing to do. The case for CDMRP advocacy has never been stronger. Thank you for your work, Mark.

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