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Menendez, Booker announce $25.3M for health research programs in New Jersey

Grants from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will fund North Jersey Community Research Initiative’s substance use and addiction research programs and Rutgers University’s health sciences research and programs

NEW JERSEY – U.S. Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker (both-D-N.J.) announced Monday a combined total of $25,269,769 to the North Jersey Community Research Initiative (NJCRI), Rutgers University’s Biomedical and Health Sciences, and the New Jersey Department of Health from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

These grants will provide funds for substance use and addiction research programs as well as allergy, immunology, transplantation and PFAS-Contaminated Drinking Water exposure research programs.

“Active scientific research on the effects of PFAS found in drinking water, as well as allergens, immunology, and substance use and addiction programs, will help protect and support New Jerseyans who are at risk,” Menendez said. “Everyone – no matter their age, race, religion, or economic background – will benefit from this research as the results provide the kind of outcomes that prioritize health and well-being of communities across the state of New Jersey.”

“These grants are a vital investment in the well-being of our community,” Booker said. “They will fund research and programs that address pressing health issues such as drug abuse and addiction and strengthen public health.”

The following grantees received funding:

  • North Jersey Aids Alliance (NJCRI): $165,213
  • Rutgers Biomedical and Health Science: $471,000
  • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey: $1,726,912
  • Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences: $2,046,977
  • Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences: $453,067
  • Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences: $748,311
  • New Jersey Department of Health: $13,595,213
  • New Jersey Department of Health: $345,000
  • Rutgers Biomedical and Health Services: $500,575
  • Autonomous Healthcare, Inc.: $325,001
  • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey: $392,500
  • New Jersey Department of Health: $1,500,000
  • New Jersey Department of Health: $3,000,000

The North Jersey Aids Alliance, as part of the North Jersey Community Research Initiative (NJCRI), one of New Jersey’s largest and most comprehensive HIV/AIDS community-based organization, will receive funding to support substance use and addiction research programs to eliminate or reduce risk factors. Rutgers University will receive funding to fund a National Coordination Resource Center that will provide technical assistance trainings and capacity development products to health care professionals across the nation.

Rutgers’ biomedical and health sciences will receive funding to conduct allergy, immunology, and transplantation research to identify how the immune system maintains health and, under abnormal conditions, also contributes to different medical disorders. The biomedical and health sciences of Rutgers will also receive funding to support a multi-site study of the health implications of exposure to PFAS-Contaminated Drinking Water. According to the CDC, a large number of studies have examined possible relationships between levels of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in blood and harmful health effects in people.

In addition, these grants will allow Rutgers’ biomedical and health sciences, as well as Rutgers State University, to conduct research on causes of cancer and possible preventative strategies as well as lung diseases research. The New Jersey Department of Health will receive grants to strengthen public health infrastructure and workforce, and to provide support for a state program designed to screen newborns for serious, rare health conditions. With these grants, Autonomous Healthcare will be able to provide substance use and addiction research programs, and the New Jersey Department of Health will be able to fund a hospital preparedness program to support community health workers for COVID response and resiliency.

Sen. Menendez has long fought for health research in the U.S., and earlier this month, along with Sen. Booker, announced $4.9 million from the U.S. Department of HHS to the city of Newark and the New Jersey Department of Health. These grants provided funds for mental health and substance use services in Newark as well as cancer prevention and control programs at the NJ Department of Health.

In January, Sen. Menendez joined a bipartisan group of colleagues in co-leading the introduction of two bills in the Senate that would cement and build on the important progress that has been made to tackle Alzheimer’s disease. The bills would reauthorize the National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA) and the Alzheimer’s Accountability and Investment Act until 2035.

In February, Sens. Menendez and Booker announced a $95.8 million award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to New Jersey from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law through the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF). The funding is providing support to New Jersey communities in upgrading essential water, wastewater, and stormwater infrastructure that protects public health and treasured bodies of water. In March, both Senators joined with Kean University officials and the NJ Association of State Colleges and Universities to highlight $18.1 million in funding the senators secured for New Jersey colleges and universities in the Fiscal Year 2023 federal spending bill.

This funding made critical investments in higher education programs such as cybersecurity, STEM research, entrepreneurship, pre-apprenticeships in advanced manufacturing and mechatronics, and nursing and medical programs, amongst others.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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