publication date: Mar. 14, 2014


By Paul Goldberg

NCI is moving toward adopting a formula that will fundamentally restructure the manner in which cancer centers are funded.

The new approach, developed by a working group of the National Cancer Advisory Board, seeks to eliminate the advantage that comes with a center’s longevity in the program.

As it stands, just being in the centers program for many cycles can build up an institution’s funding base. This favors older centers.

Two years ago, smaller and emerging cancer centers asked the institute to restructure this mechanism two years ago, and NCAB formed an ad hoc working group to consider alternative formulas for funding.

The group was headed by William Hait, global head of research and development at Janssen, a unit of Johnson & Johnson. The working group included top officials from a broad range of centers; large and small, established and emerging.

At the meeting Feb. 27, NCAB was asked to comment on the proposed formula, which is now being finalized by NCI staff.

The group recommended that the Cancer Center Support Grants be comprised of these components:

• Base award: At renewal, a predetermined base award applicable to all centers of the same type would be the starting point. All basic centers would receive one level of money, then all clinical centers, and then all comprehensive centers. This component would use up 50 percent of the direct cost budget of the NCI Centers Program.

• Merit funding: … Continue reading 40-11 NCI Rethinks Cancer Center Grants 1

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