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Prev Chronic Dis. 2010 Jul;7(4):A71. Epub 2010 Jun 15.

Measuring population health outcomes.

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  • 1gib.parrish@gmail.com

Abstract

An ideal population health outcome metric should reflect a population's dynamic state of physical, mental, and social well-being. Positive health outcomes include being alive; functioning well mentally, physically, and socially; and having a sense of well-being. Negative outcomes include death, loss of function, and lack of well-being. In contrast to these health outcomes, diseases and injuries are intermediate factors that influence the likelihood of achieving a state of health. On the basis of a review of outcomes metrics currently in use and the availability of data for at least some US counties, I recommend the following metrics for population health outcomes: 1) life expectancy from birth, or age-adjusted mortality rate; 2) condition-specific changes in life expectancy, or condition-specific or age-specific mortality rates; and 3) self-reported level of health, functional status, and experiential status. When reported, outcome metrics should present both the overall level of health of a population and the distribution of health among different geographic, economic, and demographic groups in the population.

PMID:
20550829
PMCID:
PMC2901569
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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