The recent front-page story in The Scientist titled "Scientists Skeptical Of NIH Strategic Plan" (May 11, 1992) does not fully represent the views of the scientific community. I attended two of the five regional National Institutes of Health strategic plan meetings and did not sense the strong criticism and skepticism that the story indicated.

One had to read to the very end of the story to reach the conclusions. I am afraid that not all of the readers saw the statement that "Despite initial skepticism from many sectors, the concept of strategic planning for NIH has been strongly endorsed by the extramural community." That was my perception from the Los Angeles and St. Louis meetings.

Another conclusion was that "The fundamental role of investigator-initiated research in the advancement of health science has been reaffirmed." This, too, is my perception--and it was underscored by the various panels and during the general...

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