Notions of NIH Directors: Past,.,

The fiscal year (FY) 1956 budget [for NIH] became operational on 1 July 1955.... The level of NIH activity at the time... amounted in total to $96.4 million. To some the figure may seem large. But the gross figures had little relevance to the science opportunities it would provide and to the needs of medicine.

In view of the need for new knowledge in medicine, the main deficiency preventing progress was the inadequate funding of research....

It was equally clear to some of us that success was only possible by breaking out of the confines of the then federal budget for the support of the biomedical sciences. Although resources were then available, this was a temporary situation. A realistic program would have to provide a continuing expansion of the base for scientists’ production and an expansion of physical resources to house the expanding programs. The...

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