About a month ago I contacted my local congressman, David Wu, asking for his support on “H.R. 2239 – Functional GI and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011“. He recently sent a response back outlining his views on the pending legislation.
Just to recap here is the original letter I sent to David Wu via his website.
I would just like to bring your attention to the house bill HR 2239 “Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011”.
I have personally suffered from Irritable Bowel Syndrome for 14 years and went through an acute case of Gastroparesis for 3 months. Both of these diseases have had a profound & lasting affect on my life. Motility related digestive illnesses greatly affect a person’s quality of life & they greatly impact a person’s social, educational & career endeavors. With almost 20% of Americans facing some form of digestive motility disorder, it’s a shame that there isn’t more funding given to researching these diseases.
I ask that you please become a cosponsor of H.R. 2239 by contacting Amy Bos in the office of Congressman James Sensenbrenner, Jr.
Here is David Wu’s recent response.
Dear Mr. Hedges:
Thank you for contacting me to express your support for H.R.2239 the Functional Gastrointestinal and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011. I appreciate hearing from you.
H.R. 2239 would expand the National Institutes of Health’s research activities concerning functional gastrointestinal and motility disorders. H.R. 2239 was introduced [by] James Sensenbrenner (WI) on June 16, 2011 and was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commercewhere it awaits further consideration.
With as many as 20 percent of the adult population having symptoms of IBS, it is one of the most common disorders diagnosed by doctors. It occurs more often in women than in men, and it begins before the age of 35 in about 50 percent of people.
As a member of the House Science and Technology Committee, I know well the importance of investing in biomedical research. I strongly favor increased funding for the National Institutes of Health and other research institutions, including increasing funding towards functional gastrointestinal and motility disorder research. By investing in biomedical research and development,we can provide virtually unlimited savings in both human and economic terms.
Once again, thank you for writing to me about this importantissue. If you would like to receive regular email updates from me, please go to my website at www.house.gov/wuto sign up. If I can be of additional assistance, please call my Oregon office at 503-326-2901 or 800-422-4003.
With warm regards,
Member of Congress
A lot of the response is just explaining basic information about the bill & what IBS is. I would have liked to have seen an acknowledgment that Irritable Bowel Syndrome isn’t the only functional disorder, but I am sure he had a lot on his plate at the time & may not be fully versed on all the facets of functional gastrointestinal motility disorders. Additionally it’s possible the letter might have been a form letter because it looks like some sort of mail merge tag wasn’t removed properly. Regardless, the meat of the letter is positive especially the statement “I strongly favor increased funding for the National Institutes of Health and other research institutions, including increasing funding towards functional gastrointestinal and motility disorder research.”
While the response was positive, unfortunately this story has a negative ending. David Wu resigned amid a sex scandal less than a week ago. Who will fill his seat is currently in limbo & who knows if his replacement will be as welcoming to H.R. 2239. Whenever his replacement does take office, I will not hesitate to contact them and ask for their support of H.R. 2239.
If you haven’t already contacted your local representative about H.R. 2239, please do so. After you’ve done so or if you have already done so, please either “Like” or post your support on our Functional GI and Motility Disorders Research Enhancement Act of 2011 Facebook page.