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My marvellous family


The role of chance in my career
Howard Hiatt Physician
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I was invited by the medical students to give the Faculty address at their annual... at the annual meeting at which the students present the results of their research and a Faculty member talks about his or hers. In my presentation, I urged them to keep in mind the importance of mentoring and also spoke of the role of chance that one should anticipate and attempt to take advantage of.

If it hadn't been for the chance of the strike at the clinical centre in Bethesda when I went there to do research on an in-patient service, I would never have met Bernie Horecker who subsequently opened my eyes to biological science and served as an important mentor to me throughout the early part of my scientific career.

It was chance that the year I was in Paris was the year that messenger RNA was the topic of concern at the... and that I was given an opportunity to participate in that activity. I... I ended by telling them that despite the fact that I've had this rich and busy life, that there's been nothing more important to me, of course, than my family. Here, I guess, one also has to acknowledge the role of chance and in that sense I've been extremely fortunate.

Born in 1925, American Howard Hiatt set up one of the first medical oncology research and training units in the US and has headed up some of America's most prestigious medical institutions. Hiatt attended Harvard College and received his MD from the Harvard Medical School in 1948. He was a member of the team at the Pasteur Institute, Paris, that first identified and described mRNA, and he was among the first to demonstrate mRNA in mammalian cells. From 1991 to 1997, he was Secretary of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, where he began and directs the Academy's Initiatives For Children program. He is also committed to helping disadvantaged people access decent health care.

Listeners: Milton C. Weinstein

Milton C. Weinstein, Ph.D., is the Henry J. Kaiser Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health and Professor of Medicine at the Harvard Medical School. At the Harvard School of Public Health he is Academic Director of the Program in Health Decision Science, and Director of the Program on Economic Evaluation of Medical Technology . He is best known for his research on cost-effectiveness of medical practices and for developing methods of economic evaluation and decision analysis in health care. He is a co-developer of the CEPAC (Cost-Effectiveness of Preventing AIDS Complications) computer simulation model, and has conducted studies on prevention and treatment of HIV infections. He is the co-developer of the Coronary Heart Disease Policy Model, which has been used to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of cardiovascular prevention and treatment. He is an author of four books: Decision Making in Health and Medicine: Integrating Evidence and Values; Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine,the report of the Panel of Cost Effectiveness in Health and Medicine; Clinical Decision Analysis; and Hypertension: A Policy Perspective.He has also published more than 200 papers in peer-reviewed medical, public health, and economics journals. He is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences, and a recipient of the Award for Career Achievement from the Society for Medical Decision Making. Dr. Weinstein received his A.B. and A.M. in Applied Mathematics (1970), his M.P.P. (1972), and his Ph.D. in Public Policy (1973) from Harvard University.

Tags: Bernie Horecker

Duration: 2 minutes, 10 seconds

Date story recorded: September 2006

Date story went live: 24 January 2008