Economic evaluations involve the quantification of changes in health resource utilization due to the introduction of new courses of action. Policymakers are increasingly turning to such analyses to acquire information before making decisions about alternatives in health care. Such analyses are used by insurers to determine which services to pay for, and government policy analysts use technology assessments to shed light on the economics of new interventions and courses of action. Economic evaluations are used by policymakers and analysts to make systematic decisions concerning the allocation of resources in the market.

There is a growing literature on economic evaluation in health care. Although the studies vary in quality, several good introductions such as the ones by Drummond (1981) provide a basic interpretation of the nature of ...

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