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The pacemaker is celebrated as an outstanding achievement for the advance of health care. There are hopes for similar results with an artificial heart. Many serious questions, both technical and societal, have been raised about the artificial heart program. In a recent interview, Barton Berstein, Professor of History at Stanford University, addresses his concerns with public policy for this program. Read his statements carefully; some points are well taken. On the other hand, imagine what he might have said twenty years ago about the pacemaker.