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If You Have to Make Cuts, Maybe You Can Still Prevent Some Pain

In an economy like this, everyone's looking at ways to keep costs under control. John Halamka blogs about how he manages budgets (and finds places to cut) at Harvard's Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. His many suggestions are targeted toward IT departments, but the advice can certainly be applied to other fields as well.

Halamka recommends engaging the whole staff to "identify operational inefficiencies, redundancy, and savings opportunities." A bonus is that if the staff is involved, people will be less likely to speculate and fear for their jobs. Another example is extending project timelines. "Assuming that resources are diminished and scope is already reduced, the last lever a CIO has is to extend the timelines of new projects. Instead of delivering new software this year, delay it to next year," he writes.

 

The Scan

Booster for At-Risk

The New York Times reports that the US Food and Drug Administration has authorized a third dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech SARS-CoV-2 vaccine for people 65 and older or at increased risk.

Preprints OK to Mention Again

Nature News reports the Australian Research Council has changed its new policy and now allows preprints to be cited in grant applications.

Hundreds of Millions More to Share

The US plans to purchase and donate 500 million additional SARS-CoV-2 vaccine doses, according to the Washington Post.

Nature Papers Examine Molecular Program Differences Influencing Neural Cells, Population History of Polynesia

In Nature this week: changes in molecular program during embryonic development leads to different neural cell types, and more.