July 1974

Contrasts in Health Status: A Strategy for Evaluating Health Services, vol 2.

Author Affiliations

Division of Education and Research in Community Child Health Care University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston, TX 77550


By David M Kessner, MD, Carolyn E Kalk, MS. Price, $6. Pp 219, with 27 illustrations. National Academy of Sciences, 2101 Constitution Ave, Washington, DC, 1973.

Am J Dis Child. 1974;128(1):124-126. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1974.02110260126043

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


This paperback book is the second in a series of three volumes (Contrasts in Health Status) and is entitled A Strategy for Evaluating Health Services. This study was performed by a panel of distinguished consultants under the aegis of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences. This volume is concerned with developing a method for evaluating health systems based on the tracer methodology.

Underlying the tracer method is the basic assumption that how a physician or team of providers routinely administers care for common ailments (tracers) and what happens to the patients who receive that care, or how a system identifies populations requiring special attention, eg, high-risk infants and pregnant women, will be an indicator of the general quality of care delivered in that practice. Instead of focusing on the isolated patient or health professional, a set of tracers permits consideration of a range of health service

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