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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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disentangle them. However, he did get them disentangled, through Javits, the then Republican Attorney-General, and this made the way clear for Hoch's appointment, which was finally announced in July of '55. Now, in the last eight years he has been the State Mental Health Commissioner and the state has made substantial progress in improving the amount of research that's done, and the number of patients has dropped in New York State, and the number of discharges has greatly increased; it's something like an increase of 75 percent since 1955.

Hoch had made a notable research contribution himself before he became Commissioner, showing how schizophrenia can be produced experimentally in human beings by LSD. Now, he has had the chance to lead the world in the research field in mental illness and he is certainly one of the more knowledgeable commissioners in the United States.

Q:

An illustration of careful selection and its effectiveness.

Lasker:

Yes.

About this time, it was obvious that the solution of the polio program was close at hand, and I urged Basil O'Connor to take the leadership in the field of mental health when the polio victory finally came. In the summer of '54 I met with him and Mr. Wilde, who was then the President of the National Association for Mental Health, and Wildeoffered him a position in any capacity in connection with the Association for Mental Health. O'Connor said he would consider the matter, but in



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