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Cost effectiveness is the defining element of a method for comparing both the costs and results of different alternatives for addressing particular goals. Criteria for measuring effectiveness must be similar among alternatives for a cost-effectiveness comparison. Effectiveness estimates are based on the usual experimental, quasiexperimental, or statistical designs. Cost estimates are based on a careful specification of required resources and their market values. Selection of alternatives with the greatest effectiveness per unit of cost will generally provide the largest overall impact for a given resource constraint. In performing a cost-effectiveness analysis, adequate scrutiny must be given to both cost measurement and estimation of outcomes.

Henry M. Levin
10.4135/9781412950558.n118
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