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.


  • Health Insurance and Insights from Health Literacy: Helping ... Released: March 13, 2017
    The Roundtable on Health Literacy of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine convened a public workshop to examine health insurance through the lens of health literacy, focusing on literacy related barriers to information and coverage as well as on possible solutions.
  • Assessment of the Department of Veterans Affairs Airborne ... Released: February 28, 2017
    Concerns over possible adverse effects of wartime exposure to smoke from trash burning in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations in Southwest Asia have stimulated both research and Congressional action. Public Law 112-260, § 201 (enacted January 10, 2013) directed the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to establish and maintain a registry for service members who may have been exposed to toxic airborne chemicals and fumes generated by open burn pits. VA asked the National Academies to take on the responsibility to fulfill a provision of this law that called for an independent scientific organization to prepare a report addressing issues related to the establishment and conduct of the registry and use of the information it collects.
  • Community Violence as a Population Health Issue ... Released: January 17, 2017
    On June 16, 2016, the Roundtable on Population Health Improvement held a workshop in Brooklyn, New York, to explore the influence of trauma and violence on communities. The workshop was designed to bring attention to the impact of racism and violence on communities; some social and physical interventions that can change landscapes of violence; some local strategies to build community resilience and safety; some lessons learned from select approaches and initiatives designed to reduce community violence, and public health-informed approaches to community policing and collaboration. This Proceedings of a Workshop synthesizes the presentations and discussions that occurred during the workshop, Community Violence as a Population Health Issue.
  • The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids: The ... Released: January 12, 2017
    In one of the most comprehensive studies of recent research on the health effects of recreational and therapeutic cannabis use, a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine offers a rigorous review of relevant scientific research published since 1999. This report summarizes the current state of evidence regarding what is known about the health impacts of cannabis and cannabis-derived products, including effects related to therapeutic uses of cannabis and potential health risks related to certain cancers, diseases, mental health disorders, and injuries. Areas in need of additional research and current barriers to conducting cannabis research are also covered in this comprehensive report.
  • Communities in Action: Pathways to Health Equity : Health ... Released: January 11, 2017
    Health equity is the state in which everyone has the opportunity to attain full health potential and no one is disadvantaged from achieving this potential because of social position or any other socially defined circumstance. Currently in the United States, the burdens of disease and poor health and the benefits of well-being and good health are inequitably distributed with negative consequences for the nation’s wellbeing, prosperity, and economic competitiveness. Although some aspects of a person’s health status depend on individual behaviors and choice, health is also shaped by community-wide factors, and research shows that problems like poverty, unemployment, low educational attainment, inadequate housing, lack of public transportation, exposure to violence, and neighborhood deterioration (social or physical) shape health and contribute to health inequities.
  • Accounting for Social Risk Factors in Medicare Payment ... Released: January 10, 2017
    The Department of Health and Human Services, acting through the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, asked the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to convene an ad hoc committee to identify social risk factors that affect the health outcomes of Medicare beneficiaries and methods to account for these factors in Medicare payment programs.
  • Exploring Strategies to Improve Cardiac Arrest Survival ... Released: December 20, 2016
    Cardiac arrest often strikes seemingly healthy individuals without warning and without regard to age, gender, race, or health status. Following the release of the 2015 Institute of Medicine (IOM) consensus report, Strategies to Improve Cardiac Arrest Survival: A Time to Act, eight sponsors asked the Health and Medicine Division to hold a workshop to assemble diverse stakeholders who would explore the barriers and opportunities for advancing the IOM recommendations.
  • Health Insurance and Insights from Health Literacy: Helping ... Released: December 01, 2016
    The Roundtable on Health Literacy of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine convened a workshop on health literacy in the context of health reform in the United States. The workshop was the most recent health reform–related activity of the roundtable, noted Bernard Rosof of the Quality in HealthCare Advisory Group, in his opening remarks.
  • Relevance of Health Literacy to Precision Medicine ... Released: November 10, 2016
    The Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) aims to develop new approaches for detecting, measuring, and analyzing a wide range of biomedical information including molecular, genomic, cellular, clinical, behavioral, physiological, and environmental parameters, is intended to enable a new era of medicine in which researchers, providers, and patients work together to develop individualized care. An important challenge to assembling the research cohort needed for this initiative is reaching individuals who are socioeconomically disadvantaged.
  • Community Violence as a Population Health Issue ... Released: October 24, 2016
    On June 16, 2016, the Roundtable on Population Health Improvement held a 1-day public workshop at the Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in Brooklyn, New York. At this workshop, participants explored public health approaches to reducing and preventing community violence. Individual participants discussed the effects of trauma and violence on communities and explored approaches that community members and multisector partners are using to build safe, resilient, and healthy communities.