BETHESDA, MarylandDuring his first formal meeting with the National Cancer Advisory Board (NCAB), Andrew C. von Eschenbach, MD, spelled out his leadership philosophy, his intended directions as the new director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and several areas in which he plans to take rapid action.
The former researcher and clinician at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center left little doubt that he would be a strong leader and participate in the national cancer effort beyond the traditional role of the NCI director.
"I look forward to complementing what has gone on before by focusing on the continued development of new knowledge and the translation of that knowledge into more effective interventions that can be directly applied to patients," he told NCAB members.
He added that he would work actively to assure that new interventions "are applied to the populations at risk and that they are available equally and equitably to all individuals."
Dr. von Eschenbach, who spent 25 years at M.D. Anderson, was sworn in as the NCI’s 12th director on Jan. 10. He succeeded Richard D. Klausner, who resigned in September after more than 6 years in the post.
The new NCI director said he accepted the post on two conditions. First, he wanted to continue to practice medicine, something, he said, that was both welcomed and encouraged at the Department of Health and Human Services and the White House.