Prevention is better than cure, it is said, but is it more efficient? In the quest for improvements in health and life expectancy, and reductions in the growth of health care costs, attention has focused on the cost-effectiveness of preventive over curative medicine. Economics adds an essential dimension to the analysis of prevention policy that extends far beyond the study of comparative costs. The aim of this book is to give a comprehensive overview of the economics of prevention. It examines the scope of economics; the impact of the economy on avoidable ill-health, and of prevention on the economy; the economic rationale for provision of preventive services and regulation of hazardous activities; the cost-benefit approach and the nature of efficiency in prevention; the practice of economic appraisal; economic influences on the demand for hazardous commodities and screening services; theories of preventive behaviour; national prevention programme budgeting and priority setting; and the potential contribution of health economics.
The book should be of interest to public health specialists, community medicine specialists, health educators, health service managers, health policy analysts, health economists and medical sociologists, as well as students on courses in the health sciences and health education.
`The accessability of this book, both in terms of style and price, makes if a very useful additional to the few texts available for introductory economic courses.'
`...those training in the public health and health promotion field should ensure they read this useful contribution to the study of health promotion' Health Economics
`This is a useful aid for those wishing to plan prevention programmes and to make the economic case for them.' British Medical Journal
`Cohen and Henderson have made a valuable contribution to the debate.' The Health Service Journal
`This book is highly impressive. It is a tremendous achievement. The authors are gifted writers and their judgement as to what is central to the argument, and their ability to present complex ideas in a lucid and concise manner, are both excellent.'
Health Policy and Planning
'a valuable addition to the health economics literature in a field where rhetoric and analysis often lead to different conclusions.'
International Journal of Epidemiology
'a very useful compilation of empirical work on some salient themes, using a wide range of methodologies ... These studies span a wide range of sophistication of methodology, and offer many models which could be widely exploited ... the need for a much greater volume of empirical research can only be met if new researchers are drawn into the territory. This book should both inspire the effort and reveal productive approaches.'
Mark Wheeler, University of York, Health Economic, Vol 2 (3)
Health, prevention and economics; Prevention and the economy; Consumers, producers and government; Economic appraisal in prevention; Case studies in primary prevention; Case studies in secondary prevention; Tackling appraisal; Demand and consumption; Preventive behaviour: a closer look; Towards a prevention strategy; Prevention: the contribution of health economics; Index.