The NIH Director
Earthsky's "Clear Voices for Science" with Dr. Francis Collins (90 Second Interview)
Male Voice: Earth and sky.
Dr. Francis Collins: The health of our nation is good, better than it has been for decades, but it could be better. And the scientific approach to understanding the causes of disease offers us the hope of real revolutions.
Deborah Byrd: You’re listening to Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health. He said the NIH is the largest supporter of biomedical research in the world, with an annual budget of $31 billion. Dr. Collins spoke of NIH priorities for the next five years.
Dr. Francis Collins: The first of those is to apply some of the very new and very exciting high-throughput technologies.
Deborah Byrd: In other words, cutting-edge robotics to conduct millions of lab tests at once, and to get a comprehensive understanding of how disease occurs.
Dr. Francis Collins: We can go from having snapshots about biology and medicine to having really comprehensive views that are going to change the landscape in dramatic ways for cancer, for autism, for diabetes, on down that list.
Deborah Byrd: He also spoke of health care reform in the U.S.
Dr. Francis Collins: We are clearly attempting to re-engineer our health care system to result in better outcomes and lower costs, but we need data, and NIH, by running clinical studies to look at what works and what doesn’t work, can inform that in really important ways.
Deborah Byrd: He said NIH priorities also include the next generation of medical researchers and global health. EarthSky is a clear voice for science.
Male Voice: We're at earthsky.org
Reporters: Deborah Byrd
Sound Bite: Dr. Francis Collins