The Pediatricians Accelerate Childhood Therapies Act (HR 4519) would give the National Institutes of Health (NIH) the authority to codify and maintain the Trans-NIH Pediatric Consortium, created in June 2018, and to award grants, funding, and contracts to early-career pediatric researchers. The Consortium would be chaired by the Director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and include representatives from multiple national research institutes and centers. The duties of the Consortium would include establishing pediatric research priorities, identifying gaps in research and opportunities for collaboration, and identifying opportunities to develop future pediatric researchers. The Consortium would consult with external experts and stakeholders to determine the Consortium’s priorities and potential opportunities.
This bill would also authorize the NIH to grant awards to early-career pediatric researchers, prioritizing scientists who are proficient in pediatric research but lack research independence, and those underrepresented in pediatric research. Grants would be used to fund pediatric research activities and training in areas the Consortium prioritizes. These research areas should align with current and future priorities of the NIH, including childhood cancers, precision medicine, genetics, rare diseases and disorders, neonatal development, and childhood mental health.