July 29, 1986
By the President of the United States of America
Nuclear medicine is an invaluable medical resource that contributes significantly to improvements in the diagnosis and treatment of patients in the United States. It also provides powerful tools for biomedical research.
Today, nuclear medicine allows physicians to probe the bodies of patients without using a scalpel. Three-dimensional images of organs such as the heart and kidneys can be obtained, leading to early diagnosis of disease.
In addition to images of anatomy, nuclear medicine yields information on subtle chemical processes as they occur in the body. For example, investigators can now examine the brain's processing of glucose, which it uses as a source of energy. Due to advances in nuclear medicine, the underlying pathological changes in such illnesses as Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia are now closer to being understood.
The field is growing so fast that what today seems a breakthrough will tomorrow be routine. Powerful tools such as positron emission tomography, or PET, are being brought to bear on heart disease and cancer. Where nuclear medicine techniques were once used to provide images of tumors, the tumors themselves may now be located and treated using specially targeted isotopes linked to antibodies specific to the tumor.
All across the country, from medical centers to community hospitals, nuclear medicine departments are becoming as common as x-ray laboratories. This field unites the skills of medicine, physics, chemistry, and mathematics in a common focus -- healing the sick.
To stimulate public awareness of a medical field that has come of age, the Congress, by House Joint Resolution 297, has designated the week beginning July 27, 1986, as "National Nuclear Medicine Week'' and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this week.
Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the week beginning July 27, 1986, as National Nuclear Medicine Week, and I call upon the people of the United States to observe this week with appropriate observances and activities.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-ninth day of July, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eleventh.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 2:48 p.m., July 30, 1986]
Note: The proclamation was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on July 30.