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October 13, 1962

Declining Clinical Tradition

Author Affiliations

San Francisco
Professor of Psychiatry, University of California School of Medicine, The Langley Porter Neuropsychiatric Institute.

JAMA. 1962;182(2):110-115. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050410006002

The 20-fold increase in funds for medical research over the short span of 15 years has seriously disrupted the operations of medical schools, training centers, and hospitals. A number of factors here discussed have combined to make the clinical disciplines less attractive to physicians. This trend is reflected in the declining number of applicants to medical schools and in the decline of their scholastic standing. The population needs competent clinicians, well-functioning health services, and hospitals. The medical sciences will have to be separated from clinical medicine. Although the 2 fields are complementary to each other, they attract different kinds of people, require different kinds of organization, and are based on different philosophies. The disorganizing effect of increasing support for medical science can be mitigated by increasing support for clinical medicine and the education of physicians.