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.


  • Delivering Affordable Cancer Care in the 21st Century ... Released: February 11, 2013
    Spending on health care currently accounts for 18 percent of the United States’ GDP. By 2037, that percentage is expected to increase to 25 percent of GDP. Spending on cancer care is expected to increase because of the rapid influx of new cancer diagnoses as the population ages. Also, as more expensive therapies and technologies become the standard of care, there are concerns that the costs of cancer treatment could begin to outpace health care inflation as a whole. The IOM held a workshop to examine the drivers of current and projected cancer care costs as well as potential ways to curb these costs while maintaining or improving the quality of care.
  • The Role of Telehealth in an Evolving Health Care ... Released: November 20, 2012
    Since the 1996 IOM report, Telemedicine: A Guide to Assessing Telecommunications for Health Care, attention to telehealth has continued to grow in both the public and private sectors. Peer-reviewed journals and professional societies are devoted to telehealth, the federal government provides grant funding to promote the use of telehealth, and the private technology industry continues to develop new applications for telehealth. However, barriers remain to the use of telehealth. The IOM held a workshop to examine how the use of telehealth technology can fit into the U.S. health care system.
  • Reducing Tobacco-Related Cancer Incidence and Mortality ... Released: November 01, 2012
    Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States, causing more than 440,000 deaths every year. Tobacco use is linked to the development of 18 different types of cancer and accounts for at least 30 percent of all cancer deaths. Despite the widespread agreement on the dangers of tobacco use and considerable success in reducing the smoking rate by half since the first U.S. Surgeon General’s report on smoking in 1964, progress in reducing tobacco use has slowed in recent years. The IOM held a workshop to examine current challenges in tobacco control and to explore potential policy, outreach, and treatment strategies that could reduce tobacco-related cancer incidence and death.
  • Digital Data Improvement Priorities for Continuous Learning in ... Released: September 28, 2012
    Digital health data are the lifeblood of a continuous learning health system. A steady flow of reliable data is necessary to coordinate and monitor patient care, analyze and improve systems of care, conduct research to develop new products and approaches, assess the effectiveness of medical interventions, and advance population health. The totality of available health data is a crucial resource that should be considered an invaluable public asset in the pursuit of better care, improved health, and lower health care costs. This publication summarizes discussions at the March 2012 IOM workshop to identify and characterize the current deficiencies in the reliability, availability, and usability of digital health data and consider strategies, priorities, and responsibilities to address such deficiencies.
  • Geographic Adjustment in Medicare Payment - Phase II ... Released: July 17, 2012
    Although Medicare is a national program, it adjusts payments to hospitals and health care practitioners according to the geographic location in which they provide service, acknowledging that the cost of doing business varies around the country. Under the adjustment systems, payments in high-cost areas are increased relative to the national average, and payments in low-cost areas are reduced. The HHS asked the IOM to conduct a two-part study to recommend corrections of inaccuracies and inequities in geographic adjustments to Medicare payments. In this report, the committee applies the first report’s recommendations in order to determine their potential effect on Medicare payments to hospitals and clinical practitioners.
  • Informatics Needs and Challenges in Cancer Research ... Released: July 16, 2012
    Informatics tools – which help collect, organize, and analyze data – are essential to biomedical and health research and development. The field of cancer research is facing an overwhelming deluge of data, heightening the national urgency to find solutions to support and sustain the cancer informatics ecosystem. The IOM’s National Cancer Policy Forum held a workshop February 27-28, 2012, to further examine informatics needs and challenges for 21st century biomedical research.
  • The Mental Health and Substance Use Workforce for Older ... Released: July 10, 2012
    At least 5.6 million to 8 million – nearly one in five – older adults in America have one or more mental health and substance use conditions, which present unique challenges for their care. With the number of adults age 65 and older projected to soar from 40.3 million in 2010 to 72.1 million by 2030, the aging of America holds profound consequences for the nation. Following its 2008 report highlighting the urgency of expanding and strengthening the geriatric health care workforce, the IOM was asked by the Department of Health and Human Services to undertake a complementary study on the geriatric mental health and substance use workforce. An expert committee assessed the needs of this population and the workforce that serves it.
  • The Role of Obesity in Cancer Survival and Recurrence ... Released: April 03, 2012
    Recent research suggests that obesity and excess weight can influence cancer survival and recurrence. Given the increasing rate of obesity and an aging population more susceptible to cancer, there is mounting concern about obesity’s role in fueling tumor growth. At an IOM workshop, experts presented the latest evidence on the obesity-cancer link and the possible mechanisms underlying that link, as well as potential interventions to mitigate the effects of obesity on cancer, and research and policy measures needed to counter the expected rise of cancer incidence and mortality due to an increasingly overweight and older population.
  • Crisis Standards of Care: A Systems Framework for ... Released: March 21, 2012
    Disasters can stress health care systems to the breaking point and disrupt delivery of vital medical services. Following its 2009 report, which defined crisis standards of care (CSC), the IOM develops important templates to guide the efforts of professionals and organizations responsible for CSC planning and implementation. The latest report provides a foundation of underlying principles, steps needed to achieve implementation, and the pillars of the emergency response system, each separate and yet together upholding the jurisdictions that have the overarching authority for ensuring that CSC planning and response occurs.
  • Allied Health Workforce and Services - Workshop Summary ... Released: December 08, 2011
    The demand for health care is growing as the nation ages and seeks to provide coverage for the millions of Americans who lack health insurance. At the same time, escalating costs have led to a variety of initiatives to make the delivery of health care more effective and efficient. The allied health workforce is critical to the success of these efforts. The IOM held a workshop May 9-10, 2011, to examine the current allied health care workforce and consider how it can contribute to improving health care access, quality, and effectiveness.