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Health Agencies Update
January 15, 2003

Visa Restrictions Rejected

JAMA. 2003;289(3):290. doi:10.1001/jama.289.3.290-a

Tightened restrictions on international visits to the United States are crimping scientific and medical research, says an open letter from the presidents of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine.

In a strong statement, Bruce Alberts, PhD, William Wulf, PhD, and Harvey Fineberg, MD, PhD, implored the federal government to reverse the situation. "[R]ecent efforts by our government to constrain the flow of international visitors in the name of national security are having serious unintended consequences for American science, engineering, and medicine," they wrote. "The evidence we have collected . . . reveals that ongoing research collaborations have been hampered; that outstanding young scientists, engineers, and health researchers have been prevented from or delayed in entering this country; that important international conferences have been canceled or negatively impacted; and that such conferences will be moved out of the United States . . . if the situation is not corrected."

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