Health Measurement Scales

F. Douglas Scutchfield, Alex F. Howard and Robert M. Shapiro

in Public Health

ISBN: 9780199756797
Published online February 2011 | | DOI:
Health Measurement Scales

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“What gets measured gets done,” as the old adage says. The measurement of health and health status is a key to success in public health and medical practice. In fact, all science is based on our ability to measure and calibrate things. Lemuel Shattuck is an icon in public health, largely as the result of his efforts at influencing the collection of vital statistics data in Massachusetts, the first efforts in the United States to attempt to understand disease patterns and to have information that would allow communities to work to solve community health problems. While his work in the early 1800s marks one end of the spectrum of disease measurement, a more recent key is the work that began in the 1980s, attempting to set a series of measurable objectives in health promotion and disease prevention for the nation, which have been updated every decade. Measurement of health was key in the beginning public health movement in the United States and is vital to our continued effort to achieve improved community health status.

Article.  4153 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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