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Epidemiology: Uses of epidemiology

Best book for Epidemiology
1. To study the disease trend since past
2. Community diagnosis
3. Planning and evaluation of health services
4. Evaluation of a new therapy or a new health measure
5. Determining the risk to an individual
6. Identification of syndromes
7. Filling in the gaps in the natural history of the disease
8. Searching for the cause of a disease

Epidemiology: Differences between Case – control and cohort study

Case – control study
  1. Proceeds from the outcome to cause
  2. Starts with cases of disease
  3. Tests if the suspected risk factor occurs more often in the cases than that in the controls
  4. Usually the first study for testing a hypothesis
  5. Requires fewer number of participants
  6. Yields the results relatively earlier
  7. Suitable for rare diseases
  8. Cannot directly estimate the relative risk hence calculates the ‘Odd’s ratio’ (OR)
  9. Only one outcome (disease) can be studied
  10. Inexpensive

Epidemiology: Monitoring and Evaluation

Definition of ‘Monitoring’:
Monitoring is the performance and analysis of routine measurements aimed at detecting changes in the environment or health status of the population.
Monitoring can be of variety of activities like:
• Health program
• Air quality
• Water quality
• Intrauterine growth
• Nutritional status
• Functioning of a health facility etc.

Definition of ‘Surveillance’:

Epidemiology: Types of Epidemiological Studies

There are two broad types of epidemiological studies:
1. Observational studies – we do not interfere in the process of the disease, but simply observe the disease and the associated factors.
2. Experimental studies – deliberate intervention is made and the effect of such intervention is observed.

Observational studies include:
Descriptive study and
Analytical study – Case control and cohort studies are the two types of analytical observational studies

Input-Output Analysis

It is a tool for analysing the interaction between the different sectors of an economy. An understanding of inter-sectoral interactions can aid in optimizing the planning of public health policies.
Such analyses result in creation of ‘Input-output matrices’.
The main function is to make it possible to evaluate a sector’s requirements to satisfy a given demand for goods and services.

Cost accounting in Healthcare

Cost accounting is the process of estimating and classifying costs of healthcare incurred by governments or other organizations.
The costs are categorized under various heads e.g. salaries, material costs, radiology costs, canteen, allied services for visitors, burden costs (rent, water, electricity etc.).


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