Citing money and management problems, the NIH put the kibosh on its multi-year study of the potential impact of the environment on the health of children. So far the NIH has spent $1.2 billion on the program which has so far involved over 5,500 children.
In July, Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D., director of the NIH, asked a working group of the Advisory Committee to the Director (ACD) to evaluate whether the National Children’s Study (NCS) as currently outlined was feasible, especially in light of “increasing and significant budget constraints.” The NCS was designed as a longitudinal, observational study examining the effects of a broad range of environmental and biological factors on children’s health and development by following 100,000 children from the womb to age 21.
“I and my leadership team have had time to consider this report over the last few weeks,” said Dr. Collins in a statement. “Based on the working group’s findings and internal deliberation, I am accepting the ACD findings that the NCS is not feasible. I am disappointed that this study failed to achieve its goals. Yet I am optimistic that other approaches will provide answers to these important research questions.”