The National Academy of Medicine Oct. 19 announced the election of 90 regular members and 10 international members during its annual meeting, with Indian American Raina Merchant among them.
Election to the Academy is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine and recognizes individuals who have demonstrated outstanding professional achievement and commitment to service.
“This distinguished and diverse class of new members is a truly exceptional group of scholars and leaders whose expertise in science, medicine, health, and policy will be integral to helping the NAM address today’s most pressing health challenges and inform the future of health and health care for the benefit of everyone around the globe,” said National Academy of Medicine president Victor J. Dzau. “It is my privilege to welcome these esteemed individuals to the National Academy of Medicine.”
Merchant, associate vice president and director at the Center for Digital Health at the University of Pennsylvania Health System, and associate professor in the department of emergency medicine at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, was named for her work in the constantly evolving landscape of digital media to gain insights about important health trends and developing, deploying, evaluating, and refining novel tools and techniques to promote individual and population health.
New members are elected by current members through a process that recognizes individuals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care and public health.
A diversity of talent among NAM’s membership is assured by its Articles of Organization, which stipulate that at least one-quarter of the membership is selected from fields outside the health professions, a release said.
Established originally as the Institute of Medicine in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine addresses critical issues in health, science, medicine, and related policy and inspires positive actions across sectors.
NAM works alongside the National Academy of Sciences and National Academy of Engineering 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 of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine also encourage education and research, recognize outstanding contributions to knowledge and increase public understanding of STEMM. With their election, NAM members make a commitment to volunteer their service in National Academies activities, the release said.