Over the past decades health economics has emerged as a new scientific discipline. From the very beginning the field has continued to expand and take on increasing significance. An important focus is on the economic evaluation of health care facilities withln the area of Medical Technology Assessment (MTA) or Health Technology Assessment (HTA). Other topics studied by health economists regard among others the demand for care, the role of health insurance, the industrial organisation of the health care sector and the international comparison of health care systems. Cost-of-illness (COI) studies have also attracted the attention of health economists. Since the pioneering work of Dorothy Rice in the United States in the Sixties [Rice 1966], cost-of-illness data have been published for several countries. There is, however, some controversy about the results. Physicians and policymakers frequently ask what the often very large financial estimates for costs of specific diseases mean and how reliable, valid and useful they are. This thesis focuses on COI studies. We will start with a few definitions [Rice 1994].

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F.F.H. Rutten (Frans) , P.J. van der Maas (Paul)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus University Rotterdam (Dept. of Public Health)
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Polder, J.J. (2001, October 10). Cost of Illness in the Netherlands: description, comparison and projection. Erasmus University Rotterdam. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/23537