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June 25, 1973

Need for Clinical Pharmacologists

Author Affiliations

University of California San Francisco

JAMA. 1973;224(13):1761. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03220270053019

To the Editor.—  We read with interest the EDITORIAL by Dykes in The Journal (223:1497, 1973) and concur with him regarding the need for more clinical pharmacologists. Although Dr. Dykes' proposal to increase the number of clinical pharmacologists to fulfill the need would be the ideal approach, it is probably not the most practical nor the most feasible one. Dr. W.W. Oppelt is another practitioner who has been aware of "difficulty in recruiting trainees into the field"1 as a major problem facing clinical pharmacology today. Perhaps the role of a consultant, although beneficial to the patient and the patient's physician, may not be sufficiently gratifying to the majority of physicians who want to specialize and be responsible for the final decision regarding the care and treatment of their patients. Furthermore, the prohibitive cost of training a sufficient number of graduate physicians to supply the demand necessitates consideration of an