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WASHINGTON — An oversight board tasked with making the National Institutes of Health more efficient and more effective mysteriously stopped meeting seven years ago, according to a STAT review of agency records — and its members don’t know why.

The group, which Congress created in 2006, was intended to serve as a sounding board for the NIH director, providing periodic feedback and recommendations aimed at improving the government’s largest science agency. But it hasn’t met since the summer of 2015, and several prominent researchers whom the NIH website still lists as board members appear confused as to whether the group still exists.


“There wasn’t any notification that we weren’t going to meet again — it was just that the meetings stopped getting called,” said Nancy Andrews, a board member and the former dean of the Duke University School of Medicine.

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