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This work, generated under the auspices of the International Epidemiological Association and the World Health Organization, is the product of a multidisciplinary group of 27 contributors from 15 countries. No doubt much to the credit of the editor, the book is surprisingly cohesive and reads very smoothly. It is not merely a publication of meeting proceedings or committee minutes.
The stated purpose of the book is to discuss the present and particularly the potential application of epidemiologic principles and methods to the health care planning process. Although the authors distinguish between health planning in general and health care planning, on which their discussion is focused, it would not be unreasonable to extend their discussion to health planning in general. Indeed, the authors acknowledge that their distinction is arbitrary and debatable. The main reason for this focus is their view that the value of epidemiology has not been fully recognized in
Kviz FJ. Epidemiology in Health Care Planning: A Guide to the Uses of a Scientific Method. JAMA. 1980;243(16):1668. doi:10.1001/jama.1980.03300420050032