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Today, perhaps more than ever, health care is a key item on the nation's agenda. Government policy makers, health professionals, scientists, industrial and civic leaders, patient advocates, and private citizens across the social spectrum are focusing on how best to obtain a high-quality health system that is efficient and affordable in its operation and that functions well for everyone.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) regularly considers this challenge from a variety of perspectives. Recent efforts have focused on improving the organization and operation of the nation's largest health agency; working to assess what diagnostic, therapeutic, and preventive services work best; gauging the overall health of the nation's population; and identifying ways to build an even stronger foundation of evidence-based medicine that effectively captures the promise of scientific discovery and technological innovation and enables doctors, nurses, and other health professionals to provide the right care for the right patient at the right time.

The body of this book illustrates the work of IOM committees in selected, major areas in recent years, followed by a description of IOM's convening and collaborative activities and fellowship programs. The last section provides a comprehensive bibliography of IOM reports published since 2007.

Suggested Citation

Institute of Medicine. 2009. Informing the Future: Critical Issues in Health, Fifth Edition. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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Publication Info

170 pages |  7 x 10 |  DOI:

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