Hitting The Magic Billion-Dollar Mark

The recent AIDS report by the Institute of Medicine got a lot of play in the press for its criticism of federal efforts on behalf of drug abusers and AIDS sufferers facing discrimination. But the report also contains an important message for researchers. Entitled Confronting AIDS: Update 1988” because it follows up on IOM’s landmark 1986 report, the study calls on the NIH director to evaluate how well the government is spending its money in a search for a vaccine and eventual cure for the disease. The fact that research spending is expected to reach $1 billion by fiscal 1990, notes the report, requires “an assessment of the need for further increases, to ensure that other federal research programs are not penalized by a long-term disproportionate growth in the AIDS budget.” The panel, headed by Upjohn CEO Theodore Cooper, also suggests that NIH calculate and...

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