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.


  • To Err is Human: Building A Safer Health System : Health and ... Released: November 29, 1999
    This report lays out a comprehensive strategy by which government, health care providers, industry, and consumers can reduce preventable medical errors. Concluding that the know-how already exists to prevent many of these mistakes, the report sets as a minimum goal a 50 percent reduction in errors over the next five years.
  • Exposure of the American People to Iodine-131 from Nevada ... Released: September 01, 1999
    In 1997, after more than a decade of research, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) released a report which provided their assessment of radiation exposures that Americans may have received from radioactive iodine released from the atomic bomb tests conducted in Nevada during the 1950s and early 1960s. This book provides an evaluation of the soundness of the methodology used by the NCI study to estimate: Past radiation doses; Possible health consequences of exposure to iodine-131; Implications for clinical practice; Possible public health strategies--such as systematic screening for thyroid cancer--to respond to the exposures.
  • Collaboration Among Competing Managed Care ... Released: February 01, 1999
    In November, 1997, The Institute of Medicine convened a one-day conference to explore areas for potential collaboration to improve quality among competing health plans consistent with antitrust and other legal requirements. The conference was convened to clarify the limits of such potential activities and to explore ways to stimulate collaboration; in short, to explore permissible and promising areas for collaboration for competing health plans.
  • Definitions of Serious and Complex Medical Conditions ... Released: January 01, 1999
    In response to a request by the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA), the Institute of Medicine proposed a study to examine definitions of serious or complex medical conditions and related issues.
  • Measuring the Quality of Health Care : Health and Medicine ... Released: February 01, 1998
    The statement that follows first describes quality of care based on the IOM's 1990 definition and then outlines the burden of harm from poor quality. It then describes major approaches to and recent advances in quality measurement. Finally, it describes some of the challenges facing this field.
  • The Social Security Administration's Disability Decision ... Released: January 01, 1998
    In July 2005, the Social Security Administration (SSA) proposed a new approach to assessing claims for disability benefits, which includes establishment of a national network of medical and psychological experts to evaluate cases. SSA asked the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies to offer guidance on the medical expertise required to evaluate medical records quickly and accurately. In Improving the Social Security Disability Decision Process: Interim Report, an IOM committee offers recommendations on the credentials that medical and psychological personnel who review case records should have, the training they need, and the compensation necessary to attract them.
  • Statement on Quality of Care: National Roundtable on Health ... Released: January 01, 1998
    The National Roundtable on Health Care Quality, convened by the Institute of Medicine, a component of the National Academy of Sciences, comprised 20 representatives of the private and public sectors, practicing medicine and nursing, representing academia, business, consumer advocacy, and the health media, and including the heads of federal health programs. The roundtable met 6 times between February 1996 and January 1998. It explored ongoing, rapid changes in health care and the implications of these changes for the quality of health and health care in the United States.
  • America's Children: Health Insurance and Access to Care ... Released: January 01, 1998
    America's Children is a comprehensive, easy-to-read analysis of the relationship between health insurance and access to care. The book addresses three broad questions: How is children's health care currently financed? Does insurance equal access to care? How should the nation address the health needs of this vulnerable population?