Population Health Objectives and Targets

Lawrence W. Green

in Public Health

ISBN: 9780199756797
Published online February 2011 | | DOI:
Population Health Objectives and Targets


Borrowing from its epidemiological roots and from management science, public health has widely adopted the practice of committing its resources and evaluation of its progress to priorities expressed as quantified, measurable objectives. Such population health objectives and targets generally have four essential ingredients stated in the form of answers to the questions “how much, of what, will be achieved for whom, by when?” The specification of “how much?” draws on epidemiological estimates of an achievable target expressed as a percentage decrease or improvement in the population. The “what?” is usually a specific health indicator rate or ratio (e.g., population morbidity, mortality), or a determinant of health such as a health behavior or an environmental condition. The “for whom?” describes the population in which the change is intended to occur. The “by when?” is usually a date by which the achievement can be expected. The following article provides a collection of resources (textbooks, journals, websites, etc.) that provide insight into health objectives as applied in public health; in addition, resources have been provided that detail the history and evaluation of population health objectives as they relate to US and other public health systems.

Article.  6690 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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