March 1998 AAOS Report

Dr. Ehrlich, Hugh Downs support more U.S. research funds

Michael G. Ehrlich, MD, chairman of the Academy’s Committee on Research, and Hugh Downs, anchor of ABC News "20/20," urged a House subcommittee hearing on appropriations for the National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) on Feb. 4 to continue federal support for musculoskeletal research. Downs, who is 76 years old, told how bilateral knee replacement had improved his life. Once unable to walk more than a few blocks without excruciating pain, Downs said he had resumed a productive, functional and pain-free lifestyle. Dr. Ehrlich responded to questions about scientific issues. He also presented a statement that described the scope and impact of musculoskeletal disorders on the public. He said the Academy urged the subcommittee to provide $316 million in fiscal year 1999 for NIAMS. Dr. Ehrlich said the Academy supports the proposal of the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research Funding that calls for a 15 percent increase in funding for the National Institutes of Health.

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