The National Eye Institute (NEI) is approaching its 25th birthday. During these 25 years, the NEI and the research it has funded have played a fundamental role in the evolution of many aspects of ophthalmology. Advances have resulted from basic laboratory research, clinical research, epidemiologic studies, and clinical trials. As the cost of health care comes under increasing scrutiny and cost containment and governmental debt service become major determinants of health care services, research and the transfer of its results to clinical practice become increasingly important. Our profession must make progress in determining and using the most scientifically valid and cost-effective preventive and therapeutic treatment methods. In the 1990s, research must progress at an accelerated, but orderly and cost-effective, pace, while taking advantage of breakthroughs in all areas of biomedical science.
This requires effective planning. Enabling legislation in 1968, the NEI foresaw the need for formal planning and authorized the
Chandler JW. Planning for Federal Support of Eye Research. Arch Ophthalmol. 1991;109(10):1369. doi:10.1001/archopht.1991.01080100049040