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Health Serv Res. 1998 Oct;33(4 Pt 2):1001-39.

The health of children.

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University of Rochester, Strong Memorial Hospital, NY 14642, USA.



To summarize the concept of child health and the measurement of child health status in order to help guide the evaluation of the effectiveness of medical, social, and policy programs.


Opportunities for research on children's health status and quality of care abound. Comprehensive and functional definitions create problems of measurement, but investigators are making progress in measuring children's health status both generically and for specific chronic health conditions.


Measures of child health need to be developed, improved, tested, and made user-friendly for clinical and policy research. The relationship between health status and a variety of social programs for children and families needs study. The impact of changes in healthcare organization and financing must be investigated, especially for children from vulnerable subgroups. Determining the value and effectiveness of preventive services is a pressing issue. It is crucial to understand better the link among quality of care; other factors biological, family, and social; and children's health status.

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