Economics of dental services
In: Handbook of Health Economics
The purpose of this chapter is to review dental economics in three major areas: (i) demand for and utilisation of dental care, (ii) productivity, technical efficiency and economies of scale in dental care production, and finally (iii) economic evaluation of dental care procedures and programmes. As a background to the review, we consider what makes dental care different from other health care, describe briefly dental care systems in a number of countries and present data on inputs and outcomes in terms of dental health. Within each major area, we review developments in conceptual and theoretical thinking, consider developments in the measurement of key variables and methods, and present some major results. We also draw lessons to be learnt concerning the state of the art in terms of theory, methodology and results, and outline directions for future research.
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