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Shamim Baker of USRF Awarded
“Best Paper” at AUA Forum

Tuskegee Syphilis Study Re-told with Video
of President Clinton's Apology

May 23, 2006, Atlanta, GA--- USRF Research Coordinator, Shamim Baker, today received the first annual Retrospectoscope Award of the American Urological Association at the annual meeting of the organization. Dr. Rainer Engel, chairman of the History Forum, made the award for her presentation, “Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male: A Closure Comes to the Tuskegee Study.” Dr. Engel called her talk at the 2005 Forum “a stunning presentation.” The work was recently published in Urology, and is available online here.

The award was made possible by a grant from American Cystoscope Makers, Inc. (ACMI) and consisted of an antique cystoscope, an all-expenses-paid trip to the meeting, and a $1000.00 honorarium. The Retrospectoscope award, first given at the 2006 meeting, is to be given annually to the paper judged to be the best at the AUA History Forum the prior year.

Although much has been written about the infamous Tuskegee Study, Ms. Baker’s presentation and publication are unique in her use of multimedia as part of the depiction.
Video clips from the CNN archive are featured in the work, including one in which President Clinton apologizes on behalf of the nation to study descendents and survivors at a White House ceremony in 1997. The Tuskegee study (1932-1972) is said to be the longest observational study in medical history, with seropositive African-American men left untreated for decades, even after the advent of penicillin. Congressional hearings that followed gave rise to the current laws protecting human subjects in medical research.

Co-authors of the work were Otis Brawley, M.D., of Emory University and USRF Director Leonard Marks, M.D. of UCLA. The research was underwritten by a grant from GlaxoSmithKline.


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