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H.R. 4704: Advancing Research to Prevent Suicide Act

The text of the bill below is as of Jan 28, 2020 (Referred to Senate Committee).



2d Session

H. R. 4704


January 28, 2020

Received; read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation


To direct the Director of the National Science Foundation to support multidisciplinary research on the science of suicide, and to advance the knowledge and understanding of issues that may be associated with several aspects of suicide including intrinsic and extrinsic factors related to areas such as wellbeing, resilience, and vulnerability.


Short title

This Act may be cited as the Advancing Research to Prevent Suicide Act.



Congress finds the following:


The rate of Americans dying by suicide is on the rise, increasing 10.7 to 14.0 deaths per 100,000 people from 2001 to 2017.


Suicide is the tenth-leading cause of death among people in the United States and the second-leading cause of death for young people between the ages of 15 and 34.


The National Science Foundation funds research that is improving our basic understanding of factors with potential relevance to suicide, including potential relevance to prevention and treatment.


Despite progress in mental health research, current gaps exist in scientific understanding and basic knowledge of human neural, genetic, cognitive, perceptual, behavioral, social, and environmental factors with potential relevance to suicide.


National Science Foundation research


The Director of the National Science Foundation, in consultation with the Director of the National Institutes of Health and the Director of the National Institute on Mental Health where appropriate, shall, subject to the availability of appropriations, award grants on a competitive, merit-reviewed basis to institutions of higher education (or consortia of such institutions) to support multidisciplinary, fundamental research with potential relevance to suicide, including potential relevance to prevention and treatment, including but not limited to—


basic understanding of human social behavior;


the neural basis of human cognition;


basic understanding of cognitive, linguistic, social, cultural and biological processes related to human development across the lifespan;


basic understanding of perceptual, motor, and cognitive processes, and their interaction, in typical human behavior; and


basic understanding of the relevance of drug and alcohol abuse.


To promote the development of early career researchers, in awarding funds under subsection (a) the National Science Foundation shall encourage applications submitted by early career researchers, including doctoral students or postdoctoral researchers.

Passed the House of Representatives January 27, 2020.

Cheryl L. Johnson,