About Publications

Publications from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine provide objective and straightforward advice to decision makers and the public. This site includes Health and Medicine Division (HMD) publications released after 1998. A complete list of HMD’s publications from its establishment in 1970 to the present is available as a PDF.


  • Childhood Immunization Schedule and Safety: Stakeholder ... Released: January 16, 2013
    Vaccines are among the most safe and effective public health interventions to prevent serious disease and death. Health care providers who vaccinate young children follow a schedule prepared by the U.S. Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. New vaccines undergo rigorous testing prior to receiving FDA approval; however, like all medicines and medical interventions, vaccines carry some risk. Driven largely by concerns about potential side effects, there has been a shift in some parents’ attitudes toward the child immunization schedule. HHS asked the IOM to identify research approaches, methodologies, and study designs that could address questions about the safety of the current schedule. The IOM committee uncovered no evidence of major safety concerns associated with adherence to the childhood immunization schedule. Should signals arise that there may be need for investigation, however, the report offers a framework for conducting safety research using existing or new data collection systems.
  • Adverse Effects of Vaccines: Evidence and Causality : Health ... Released: August 25, 2011
    Immunizations are a cornerstone of the nation’s efforts to protect people from a host of infectious diseases. Though generally very rare or very minor, there are side effects, or “adverse effects,” associated with some vaccines. The IOM reviewed a list of adverse events associated with eight vaccines to evaluate the scientific evidence about the event–vaccine relationship. Using epidemiologic and mechanistic evidence, the committee developed 158 causality conclusions, assigning each relationship between a vaccine and an adverse health problem to one of four causation categories. Overall, the IOM committee concludes that few health problems are caused by or clearly associated with vaccines.
  • Sleep Disorders and Sleep Deprivation: An Unmet Public ... Released: March 21, 2006
    It is estimated that 50 to 70 million Americans chronically suffer from a disorder of sleep and wakefulness, hindering daily functioning and adversely affecting health and longevity. The Committee on Sleep Medicine and Research's report, Sleep Disorders and Sleep Deprivation: An Unmet Public Health Problem, recognizes that along with the continued leadership of the National Center on Sleep Disorders Research, a coordinated strategy is required to ensure continued scientific and clinical advances.
  • Safe Medical Devices for Children : Health and Medicine ... Released: July 18, 2005
    According to Food and Drug Administration (FDA), some 80,000 medical devices are marketed in the United States, ranging from those as simple as plastic tubing and baby bottle nipples to others as complex as pacemakers or cerebrospinal fluid shunts. Although low-risk devices like plastic tubing need not be evaluated by FDA before going to market, between 55 percent and 60 percent of all devices are considered to be higher risk and require agency review before they can enter the market. In this IOM study, sponsored by the FDA, the committee was charged with evaluating FDA's postmarket surveillance of medical devices used with children specifically.
  • Safety of Genetically Engineered Foods: Approaches to ... Released: July 28, 2004
    Safety of Genetically Engineered Foods: Approaches to Assessing Unintended Health Effects assists policymakers in evaluating the appropriate scientific methods for detecting unintended changes in food and assessing the potential for adverse health effects from genetically modified products. In this report, the committee recommended that greater scrutiny should be given to foods containing new compounds or unusual amounts of naturally occurring substances, regardless of the method used to create them.
  • Ethical Conduct of Clinical Research Involving Children ... Released: March 24, 2004
    To address concerns about the adequacy of the current system for protecting child participants in research given a public commitment to expanding pediatric clinical research, the Institute of Medicine convened the Committee on Clinical Research Involving Children.
  • Preparing for the Psychological Consequences of Terrorism: A ... Released: June 16, 2003
    Continued threats of terrorism have raised questions about the impact on the psychological health of the nation and how well the public health infrastructure is able to meet the psychological needs that will likely result. In this report, Preparing for the Psychological Consequences of Terrorism: A Public Health Strategy, an IOM committee highlights some of the critical issues in responding to the psychological effects of terrorism and provides possible options for intervention.
  • Suicide Prevention and Intervention: Summary of a Workshop ... Released: November 15, 2001
    Two workshops were convened for the committee on the Pathophysiology and Prevention of Adult and Adolescent Suicide of the Institute of Medicine. Workshop I was on Risk Factors for Suicide and convened on March 14, 2001. Workshop II was on Suicide Prevention and Intervention and convened on May 14, 2001.
  • Rational Therapeutics for Infants and Children: Workshop ... Released: January 01, 2000
    The development of rational therapeutics for infants and children has recently received much attention from the academic community, industry, the U.S. Congress, and the federal government. The members of the Roundtable on Research and Development of Drugs, Biologics, and Medical Devices recognized that a variety of interesting and challenging issues are being raised, from several different perspectives, among a diverse group of interested and affected parties.
  • Chemical and Biological Terrorism: Research and ... Released: December 01, 1999
    Chemical and Biological Terrorism identifies the R&D efforts needed to implement recommendations in key areas: pre-incident intelligence, detection and identification of chemical and biological agents, protective clothing and equipment, early recognition that a population has been covertly exposed to a pathogen, mass casualty decontamination and triage, use of vaccines and pharmaceuticals, and the psychological effects of terror. Specific objectives for computer software development are also identified.