Geisel Professor Elected to the National Academy of Medicine

Ellen Meara, PhD, a professor of The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, and an adjunct professor of economics at Dartmouth College, has been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Medicine (NAM).

Election to the National Academy of Medicine 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. With its 100 new members (including 10 international members) announced this week at its annual meeting in Washington, DC, the NAM now has more than 2,200 members.

Ellen Meara, PhD (photo by Mark Washburn)

“I am incredibly honored to be recognized by the profession in this way and am eager to support NAM’s mission of offering independent advice to improve health for all,” says Meara, who was named the Peggy Y. Thomson Professor in the Evaluative Clinical Sciences at Dartmouth in 2018.

As a well-known health economist, Meara’s research focuses on non-medical determinants of healthcare use, health, and employment—and seeks to answer questions such as, How do non-clinical factors like education, health insurance coverage, payment policies for Medicare and Medicaid, or state and federal regulations shape healthcare use, health, and economic outcomes? Much of her work focuses on disabled populations, including people who are struggling with mental illness and substance use disorders.

NAM’s 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, healthcare, and public health. NAM ensures a diversity of talent among its membership by stipulating that at least one-quarter of its members be selected from fields that are outside (but interface with) the health professions—such as law, engineering, social sciences, and the humanities.

“These newly elected members represent the most exceptional scholars and leaders whose remarkable work has advanced science, medicine, and health in the U.S. and around the globe,” says NAM’s President Victor J. Dzau. “Their expertise will be vital to addressing today’s most pressing health and scientific challenges and informing the future of health and medicine for the benefit of us all. I am honored to welcome these esteemed individuals to the National Academy of Medicine.”

Meara is co-faculty director of Dartmouth’s Master of Health Care Delivery Science program, serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Health Economics, and is a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research. She earned a BA from Northwestern University in mathematical methods for social sciences and political science, and a PhD in economics from Harvard University.