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The NIH announced today that its Director, Harold Varmus, M.D., on Wednesday, September 23, 1998, will hold a special meeting on enhancing public participation in NIH activities. At the meeting, individual public participants invited by the NIH will discuss future activities and responsibilities of the proposed NIH Director's Council of Public Representatives and the NIH Offices of Public Liaison.
The NIH Director's Council of Public Representatives will serve as a forum for discussing issues and concerns and for exchanging viewpoints that are important to NIH policies, programs, and research priorities. The NIH Offices of Public Liaison are expected to help strengthen collaborative relationships between the NIH and the many publics it serves.
These initiatives were recommended in the National Academy of Sciences' Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, Scientific Opportunities and Public Needs: Improving Priority Setting and Public Input at the National Institutes of Health, released July 8, 1998. The full text of the report is available on-line at the following IOM site: http://www.nap.edu/readingroom/books/nih.
The September 23 meeting will run from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. on the NIH campus, Bethesda, MD, Building 31, C Wing, Sixth Floor, Conference Room 10, The entire meeting is open to the public; however, seating in the main room will be on a first-come, first-served basis. The meeting will be televised to nearby Conference Room 6 for additional attendees.