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1 I. INTRODUCTION This report concerns the feasibility of estimating national needs for research personnel in the biomedical and behavioral sciences. The President on July 12, 1974, signed the National Research Act (P. L. 93-348), Title I of which* amends the Pub- lic Health Service Act "to establish a program of National Research Service Awards to assure the continued excellence of biomedical arid behavioral research". The new legislation authorizes awards for predoctoral and postdoctoral research training both to individuals and to non-Federal public or nonprofit institutions (which will select individuals for such awards). Not less than 25 percent of the amount appropriated must be made available directly to individuals. Award recipi- ents must give assurance that they will meet a service requirement---engage in health research or teaching or, alternatively, (1) serve as a member of the National Health Service Corps, (2) serve in his or her specialty in a geographic shortage area in that specialty or in a health maintenance organization which offers care in a medically underserved area, or (3) serve in an approved health-related activity. Guidelines now in preparation will specify the period of time within which repayment may be made' the type of research and teaching which qualify as payback' and other mottlers relating requirement must to service payback. Recipients who fail to comply with the service repay the amount of their awards plus interest, less proportionate credit for half of the months they actually served. Effective July 1, 1975, awards under Title I may be made for research training only in those subject areas in which there is need for personnel, as determined by a continuing study which the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare is to re- quest the National Academy of Sciences to conduct. As described in the legislation, the continuing study is "to establish (A) the Nation's overall need for biomedical and behavioral research personnel, (B) the subject areas in which such personnel are needed and the number of such personnel needed in each such area, and (C) the kinds and extent of training which should be provided such personnel". Also to be derived from the continuing study is an assessment of current training programs, as well as identification of the kinds of research positions available to and held by recipients of National Research Service awards O An annual report of the continuing study is to be submitted by the Secretary to the House Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce and the Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare not later than March 31 of each year O In response to a request from the Secretary, the Governing Board of the National Research Council (NRC) voted on September 16, 1974, to authorize the Commission on Human Resources to explore the feasibility of a continuing study. The feasibility study was initiated shortly thereafter with contract support from the National Insti- tutes of Health (NDH), to which agency lead responsibility had been assigned by the Secretary for developing a plan to implement the provisions of Title I of the Act. *Title I, cited as the National Research Service Award Act of 1974, repeals existing research training and fellowship authorities of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration (ADAMHA). Hence- forth, research training activities of these agencies will be carried out under a consolidated authority contained in the new law. Title I does not address clinical training, nor does it affect authority available elsewhere in the Public Health Ser- vice Act under which the Secretary may enter into contracts with public and private entities and individuals for health services research and health statistics train- i ng e

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2 Following discussions with representatives of the Assembly of Behavioral and Social Sciences, the Assembly of Life Sciences, and the Institute of Medicine, a Committee on a Feasibility Study of National Needs for Biomedical and Behavioral Research Personnel (Appendix A) was appointed to supervise conduct of the feasibil- ity study. To advise the Committee, panels were established for the following five disciplinary areas into which were grouped the various fields of research training support by NIH and ADAMHA: Basic Medical Sciences, Pasic and Applied Biology, Behavioral Sciences, Clinical Sciences, and Health Services Research and Evaluation (Appendix B). In addition, three panels concerned with methodology were set up under the following titles: Data and Analyses, Supporting Studies, and Impacts of Training (Appendix B). Administrative support for committee and panel functions has been provided by staff of the Commission with the assistance of a consultant who was available on essentially a fuLl-time basis. To prepare the ground for com- mittee operations, discussions were held with staff of the cognizant Congressional Committees, professional and education associations, Sections of the National Acad- emy of Sciences, and N~H/ADAMHA representatives. Liaison officers designated by NIH/ADAMHA provided a substantial body of program data, as well as interpretation of policies and procedures of the two agencies. Completion of the report was targeted for December 3l, 1974. In light of the complexity of the overall task, however, the request for support of the feasibility project anticipated a possible need for extension of time to February 28, 1975, with the feasibility report itself to be completed in early February. Consideration of the report by the Governing Board of the National Research Council would then lead to a decision concerning acceptance of the request to conduct a continuing study. II. EARLIER EFFORTS TO ESTIMATE NATIONAL NEEDS Various Federal agencies have attempted to forecast the goodness of fit between supply and demand, to project supply and/or demand, and to estimate the personnel requirements for subject fields in broad and fine detail. The Bureau of Labor Sta- tistics has projected requirements from 1968 to 1980 for doctoral scientists and engineers in private industry, based on a questionnaire study of major employers (1). It also has made projections of long-term trends in industrial and occupational growth based on a seven-step projection model which incorporates factors affecting the whole economy. The National Science Foundation has completed two studies---and has a third in preparation---on the projected relationship between supply and utilization of sci- ence and engineering doctorates, based upon supply trends for six preceding years and explicit assumptions concerning rates of increase in the Gross National Product, funds to be expended on research and development, and employment requirements for academic and nonacademic positions (2~. In terms of direct relevance to the present area of inquiry, several publica- tions of the National Institutes of Health merit special attention. Two reports,is- sued in 1963 and 1968 respectively, used an "updated" benchmark approach (3,4). A base-year employment benchmark was established separately for government, industry, and non-profit institutions' classified by level of training. Annual projections of undergraduate and graduate enrollment and of M.D. candidate enrollment were used to extend the benchmark figures, with stated assumptions as to degree completion rates, educational progression rates, and age-cohort survival rates.