In 1988, an exciting and important new program was launched at the Institute of Medicine (IOM). Through the generosity of the Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Foundation, a lecture series was established to bring to greater attention some of the critical health policy issues facing our nation today. Each year a subject of particular relevance is addressed through three lectures presented by experts in the field. The lectures are published at a later date for national dissemination.
The Rosenthal lectures have attracted an enthusiastic following among health policy researchers and decision makers, both in Washington, D.C., and across the country. Our speakers are the leading experts on the subjects under discussion and our audience includes many of the major policymakers charged with making the U.S. health care system more effective and humane. The lectures and associated remarks have engendered lively and productive dialogue. The Rosenthal lecture included in this volume captures a panel discussion on the IOM report, Preventing Childhood Obesity: Health in the Balance. There is much to learn from the informed and real-world perspectives provided by the contributors to this book.