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ABOUT THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES The National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the National Academy of Medicine work together as the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (the National Academies) to provide independent, objective analysis and advice to the nation and conduct other activities to solve complex problems and inform public policy decisions. The National Academies also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge, and increase public understanding in matters of science, engineering, and medicine. The Health and Medicine Division (HMD), formerly known as the program unit of the Institute of Medicine, is a division of the National Academies. HMDâs aim is to help those in government and the private sector make informed health decisions by providing evidence on which they can rely. Each year, more than 3,000 individuals volunteer their time, knowledge, and expertise to advance the nationâs health through the work of HMD. Many of the studies that HMD undertakes are requested by federal agencies and independent organizations; others begin as specific mandates from Congress. While its expert, consensus committees are vital to its advisory role, HMD also convenes a series of forums, roundtables, and standing committees, as well as other activities, to facilitate discussion; discovery; and critical, cross-disciplinary thinking.