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.


  • The Role of Clinical Studies for Pets with Naturally Occurring ... Released: October 30, 2015
    Recently, there has been renewed interest in comparative oncology— the study of naturally developing cancers in animals as models for human disease—as one way to improve cancer drug development and reduce attrition of investigational agents. Tumors that spontaneously develop in pet dogs and other companion animals as a result of normal aging share many characteristics with human cancers, such as histological appearance, tumor genetics, biological behavior, molecular targets, and therapeutic response.
  • Assessing and Improving the Interpretation of Breast Images ... Released: September 24, 2015
    Since 2005, a substantial new body of research pertaining to mammography interpretation has been published. To explore this evidence and its policy implications, the IOM’s National Cancer Policy Forum, with support from the American Cancer Society (ACS), brought together experts and members of the public for the workshop, “Assessing and Improving the Interpretation of Breast Images,” which was held on May 12 and 13, 2015, in Washington, DC. At this workshop, clinicians and researchers, along with representatives from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Cancer Institute (NCI), and patient advocacy organizations, discussed potential options for action to improve the quality of mammography interpretation.
  • Improving Diagnosis in Health Care : Health and Medicine ... Released: September 22, 2015
    Urgent change is warranted to address this challenge. Improving diagnosis will require collaboration and a widespread commitment to change among health care professionals, health care organizations, patients and their families, researchers, and policy makers. The recommendations from Improving Diagnosis in Health Care contribute to the growing momentum for change in this crucial area of health care quality and safety.
  • Improving Diagnosis in Health Care : Health and Medicine ... Released: September 22, 2015
    Urgent change is warranted to address this challenge. Improving diagnosis will require collaboration and a widespread commitment to change among health care professionals, health care organizations, patients and their families, researchers, and policy makers. The recommendations from Improving Diagnosis in Health Care contribute to the growing momentum for change in this crucial area of health care quality and safety.
  • Comprehensive Cancer Care for Children and Families ... Released: July 20, 2015
    To examine specific opportunities and suggestions for driving optimal care delivery supporting survival with high quality of life, the National Cancer Policy Forum of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) and the American Cancer Society co-hosted a workshop on “Comprehensive Cancer Care for Children and Their Families,” which convened experts and members of the public on March 9 and 10, 2015, in Washington, DC.
  • Policy Issues in the Development and Adoption of Biomarkers ... Released: April 02, 2015
    A long-held goal in oncology has been to develop therapies that target the specific abnormalities in each patient’s cancer rather than simply treating cancers based on the tissue of origin. In the past decade, advances in technology have enabled researchers to relatively quickly and inexpensively determine, in minute detail, the genetic makeup of tumors.However, many challenges remain in effectively and efficiently developing new targeted cancer therapies and the biomarker tests that indicate which patients will be responsive to them, and in implementing them appropriately in clinical practice. These challenges include many policy issues, such as the level of oversight needed for test development and use, levels of evidence necessary for reimbursement decisions, and ways to meet informational needs of patients and care providers.
  • Ensuring Patient Access to Affordable Cancer Drugs ... Released: November 10, 2014
    To explore the issue of cancer drug costs and patient access to affordable, appropriate drug therapies, the NCPF convened a workshop on ensuring patient access to affordable cancer drugs on June 9, 2014, in Washington, DC.
  • Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation's Health ... Released: July 29, 2014
    Since the creation of the Medicare and Medicaid programs in 1965, the public has provided tens of billions of dollars to fund graduate medical education (GME), the period of residency and fellowship that is provided to physicians after they receive a medical degree; however, there is a striking absence of transparency and accountability in the GME financing system for producing the types of physicians that the nation needs. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) formed an expert committee to conduct an independent review of the governance and financing of the GME system. In its report, Graduate Medical Education That Meets the Nation’s Health Needs, the committee provides recommendations and an initial road¬map for reforming the Medicare GME payment system and building an infrastructure that can drive more strategic investment in the nation’s physician workforce.
  • Contemporary Issues for Protecting Patients in Cancer ... Released: July 02, 2014
    On February 24 and 25, 2014, the National Cancer Policy Forum of the Institute of Medicine convened a workshop to frame and discuss contemporary issues in human subjects protections as they pertain to cancer research, with the goal of identifying potential relevant policy actions. This document summarizes the workshop.
  • Identifying and Addressing the Needs of Adolescents and ... Released: November 04, 2013
    Cancer is the leading disease-related cause of death in adolescents and young adults (AYAs). Each year, nearly 70,000 AYAs between the ages of 15 and 39 are diagnosed with cancer. Adolescents and young adults face a variety of unique short- and long-term health and psychosocial issues. Many programs for cancer treatment, survivorship care, and psychosocial support do not focus on the specific needs and risks of AYA cancer patients. The IOM’s National Cancer Policy Forum held a workshop to facilitate discussion about gaps and challenges in caring for AYA cancer patients and potential strategies and actions to improve the quality of their care.