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11.2. EXPLANATION OF CHANGES SHOWN ON SCHEDULE C1 FOR DIVISION B
Office of Technology Assessment
Health and Life Sciences Division
A. MANDATORY PAY AND RELATED COSTS
1. Annualization of January 1993 3.7% Cost-of-Living Adjustment 2.January 1994 2.2% Cost-of-Living Adjustment
3. Merit increases and promotions averaging 3% agency-wide
4. Annualization of January 1993 9.5% plus estimated January 1994 9.5% health benefit increases
5. Increase in retirement contributions (FERS)
6. January 1994 2.9% locality-based pay adjustment
B. PRICE LEVEL CHANGES
1. Travel inflation rate of 6.25% applied to base
2. Printing and publications inflation rate of 3.7% applied to base
3. Consultant services inflation rate of 3% applied to base
4. Other services inflation rate of 3% applied to base
5. Supplies and materials inflation rate of 3% applied to base
C. PROGRAM TYPE CHANGES
a. Additional assessments and studies
3. Equipment, Alterations, Maintenance, Repairs, Etc.
11.3. Role of the Health and Life Sciences Division
The Health and Life Sciences Division comprises three programs: Biological Applications; Food and Renewable Resources; and Health.
The Biological Applications Program assesses state-of-the-art technologies arising from progress in biological science. Its broader responsibility is to help Congress understand complex technologies in biomedical and behavioral sciences. Early warning is very much a part of the Program's charter, and some studies explore potential future applications of biological technologies; for example, biotechnology and the new genetics. Because many of these new technologies have potential impacts that are of great social and political significance, ethical, legal, and regulatory analysis is often a component of the assessments conducted by the Program.
The scope of the Food and Renewable Resources Program includes all agriculture-related technologies used to provide society with food, fiber, and chemicals, and technologies that enhance or jeopardize the ability to sustain in perpetuity the renewable resource bases that make such production possible. Agriculture itself is defined in the broad sense, including all crop and livestock production and forestry. Attention also is given to the impact that technology has had and is likely to have on how the agricultural system is organized, who controls it, and where it is heading. Further, the Program covers renewable resources that presently may not be considered or produced as crops, but that support such production and are fundamental to human needs. Relevant international analyses are often carried out.
The Health Program's charter is reflected in two primary types of efforts: 1) assessments of specific clinical and general health care technologies, and 2) studies of broader issues of health policy related to or with implications for technology. In addition, it has certain statutory, methodology oversight responsibilities regarding Vietnam veterans health studies, and provides the staff work for the OTA Director's mandated responsibility to select and appoint members of the Prospective Payment Assessment Commission and the Physician Payment Review Commission.
11.4. Accomplishments of the Health and Life Sciences Division
In FY 1992, the Health and Life Sciences Division published 9 assessment reports:
Volume II - Adolescent Health: Background and the Effectiveness of Selected
Forest Service Planning: Accommodating Uses, Producing Outputs, and
Evaluation of The Oregon Medicaid Proposal
Home Drug Infusion Therapy Under Medicare
Cystic Fibrosis and DNA Tests: Implications of Carrier Screening
A New Technological Era for American Agriculture
The Biology of Mental Disorders
Special Care Units for People with Alzheimer's and Other Dementias:
The Division also produced 10 background papers:
Screening Mammography in Primary Care Settings: Implications for Cost,
Medical Monitoring and Screening in the Workplace: Results of a Survey