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I am grateful to Dr Lecklitner for his kind remarks and am extremely sympathetic to his concerns about the plight of young physicians interested in academic careers. My wife is one of them! However, he seems to imply that I advocate an end to all medical publishing by younger physicians. That would put a number of people out of business (including myself) and would inhibit the "rapid dissemination of new ideas" so necessary for medicine to progress and flourish. What I was suggesting was something different: young academics should not be "forced" to publish when (1) they may not be interested in publishing papers, (2) they may not be able to write publishable papers, or (3) they may have nothing publishable to say. If alternative routes to tenure are available, eg, service, teaching, or patient care, then publishing may be selected voluntarily. Perhaps only then will the quality
Strasburger VC. Young Academic Physicians and Publication-Reply. JAMA. 1986;255(15):2024. doi:10.1001/jama.1986.03370150065017