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Executive Secretariat

Congressional Mail Procedures


All congressional mail received at the NIH will normally be delivered to the Executive Secretariat (ES) via NIH mail procedures.

However, if congressional mail arrives in your OD Office or Institute/Center (IC), and it did not come to you via ES, you must forward it to your Office's/IC's correspondence contact as soon as possible. Correspondence contacts may email a scanned copy to your ES contact, fax it to ES (301-496-8276), or have it hand-delivered to ES (Building 1/B1-56), via courier. ES will review the mail and determine if an assignment in DDRMS is appropriate or if the mail should be returned to the Office/IC for processing, as outlined below:

  • ES will open and route, via DDRMS, mail addressed to:
    • the Office's/IC's Director or Deputy Director
    • the Office's/IC's Associate, Assistant, Scientific, or Clinical Director
    • the Office's/IC's Executive Officer
    • an organization rather than a specific person
  • All other congressional mail received in ES will be forwarded, unopened, to the correspondence contact in the addressee's Office/IC. ES will include instructions with the mail on how the Office/IC should proceed once the mail is opened and a determination is made as to whether the letter concerns general NIH business or is personal to the addressee.

Due Dates

Every effort should be made to meet due dates for congressional responses, especially if the assignment came to the NIH via the Office of the Secretary, HHS. If your Office/IC knows they will need more time, you must send an interim response to the Congress Member within five working days of the referral. Your ES contact will be able to assist you with wording an interim response.

This page last reviewed on April 14, 2017

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