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Wichita State And Via Christi Urge Lawmakers To Restore Funding for Medical Research Program


Kansas lawmakers are proposing a funding cut to a national medical research program based at Wichita State University. KMUW’s Deborah Shaar has the story.

The Kansas House Education Budget Committee voted to drop its $1,000,000 in funding for the National Center of Innovation for Bio-materials in Orthopaedic Research, better known as “CIBOR”.

The program involves researching and developing composite materials used in bio-science and medical products such as orthopaedic implants and devices.

WSU’s director of government relations Andy Schlapp says cutting the funding in next year’s budget will essentially kill the program.

“So it’s a cut that made was to try to solve a budget crisis that doesn’t do that," she says. "And the other piece is that it also hurts the economy of Kansas because it takes away a growth industry and the funding of research that could have an impact on the economy going forward.”

Schlapp says the state’s funding comes from a special tax collected, not the general fund.

Via Christi, the state’s largest health system, is the largest payor into that bio-sciences research tax and is a partner in the CIBOR program.

WSU and Via Christi are urging lawmakers to reconsider their decision before they finalize the budget for the fiscal years of 2016 and 2017.

For more information, check out the press release below:


To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us atnews@kmuw.org.


Deborah joined the news team at KMUW in September 2014 as a news reporter. She spent more than a dozen years working in news at both public and commercial radio and television stations in Ohio, West Virginia and Detroit, Michigan. Before relocating to Wichita in 2013, Deborah taught news and broadcasting classes at Tarrant County College in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area.