Skip to main contentU.S. National Library of MedicineU.S. National Library of Medicine

Profiles in Science
Pinterest badge Follow Profiles in Science on Pinterest!

The Mary Lasker Papers

Letter from H. M. Marvin to Mary Lasker pdf (170,326 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from H. M. Marvin to Mary Lasker
Number of Image Pages:
2 (170,326 Bytes)
1944-08-22 (August 22, 1944)
Marvin, H. M.
American Heart Association
Lasker, Mary
Original Repository: Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library. Mary Lasker Papers
Reproduced with permission of the American Heart Association.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Research Support as Topic
Exhibit Category:
Mary Lasker and the Growth of the National Institutes of Health
Box Number:
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Series: Series I
SubSeries: Topical Files
Folder: Heart, Miscellaneous, 1944-1983
August 22, 1944
Dear Mrs. Lasker:
Immediately after our pleasant and helpful conversation two weeks ago, I sent letters to about thirty of the men whom I believed to be in the best position to furnish information that might be helpful to Senator Pepper's Committee. Replies have not been received from all, but I believe the information now available is of sufficient interest and value to justify my sending it to you. Please understand that this represents a very hasty and necessarily incomplete survey, although in many instances the figures have been accurately compiled by hospitals and Medical Schools. It should also be understood that the basis for calculations has not been the same in all instances, as some correspondents have excluded the salaries of full-time teachers who spend a few hours per week in investigative work, while others have included such salaries. Despite these inaccuracies, I believe the figures are sufficient to justify certain broad conclusions.
Boston - $115,000
Chicago (incomplete) - $80,000
New York City - $79,500 (not including Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research)
Philadelphia - $116,000
California - $60,000
Connecticut - $10,000
Florida - $ 11,000
Georgia - $6,000
Iowa - $1,500
Kentucky - $2,000
Louisiana - $4,000
Michigan - $5,000 to 8,000 (incomplete)
New York State - $21,000 (excluding New York City)
North Carolina - $6,000
Ohio (incomplete) - $5,000
Pennsylvania - $50,000 (excluding Philadelphia)
Tennessee - $5,000
Virginia - $5,000
Total - $587,000
As you will see, the above list omits a few medical centers, such as St. Louis and Baltimore, where small additional sums are undoubtedly being spent. But I believe the figures given above represent a fairly close approximation to the total now being expended on cardiovascular research in this country. In my opinion the figures are very liberal estimates, inasmuch as they frequently include such items as salaries of men engaged primarily in teaching rather than research, the salaries of janitors, etc.
You will understand of course that the above amounts do not include the sums spent by the research departments of the large drug-manufacturing houses, such as Lilly, Squibb, Parke-Davis, and others. The firm of Eli Lilly and Company spends large sums for the investigation of hypertension, which is an illustration of the type of work that might have to be included in a full survey.
The replies to my first question have been prompt and detailed. Unfortunately, my second question, relating to the amount of money that could be profitably used for cardiovascular research, was ignored by many of my correspondents. Most of those who answered expressed the general opinion that the institutions and individuals now engaged in such research could use three to four times the amounts now available. California could use $350,000 yearly for the problems that are considered urgent. Several whose opinions I value highly have suggested amounts of two or three million dollars a year as suitable, with the understanding that this might have to be increased after one or two years,
I am still awaiting some word from a representative of the American Medical Association, who tells me that more precise information may be on file in the headquarters office.
If this is not sufficiently detailed or helpful, please do not hesitate to write or telephone me, and I will do anything I can to supplement it. My New Haven address is 303 Whitney Avenue, and the telephone number is 5-8241. I will be in the New York office again on Tuesday August 29, and you could probably reach me by telephone between 10:15 and 4:30, except for the lunch hour.
Sincerely yours,
H. M. Marvin
Metadata Last Modified Date:
Linked Data:
RDF/XML     JSON     JSON-LD     N3/Turtle     N-Triples