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Improving Health Services

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Improving Health Services

Background, Method and Applications

Walter Holland

Walter Holland, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK

2013 288 pp Hardback 978 1 78347 018 1
ebook isbn 978 1 78347 019 8

Hardback £83.00 on-line price £74.70


Available as an eBook for subscribing libraries on Elgaronline.

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‘Reflecting on more than 50 years of personal experience at the interface of epidemiology and health services research, Professor Walter Holland has written a book full of candid and – often – critical observations. He always succeeds in seeing the wood through the trees, and this book convincingly demonstrates the value of research in improving health service practice and policy.’
– Johan Mackenbach, Erasmus MC, The Netherlands


Further information

This insightful book describes how Health Services Research (HSR) can be developed and used to evaluate, advance and improve all aspects of health services. It demonstrates the need for good HSR to avoid the continuation or development of ineffective or cost-inefficient services.

Drawing on his extensive personal experience in the development of HSR, Walter Holland provides examples from the US and the UK to illustrate important lessons for the future improvement of health services. Taking a distinctive approach to describing the purposes and activities of HSR, the book focuses on the significance of close collaboration with those responsible for the delivery and decisions of health policy. The major message is the importance of heeding the findings of HSR so as to develop evidence-based health policy, and to understand and influence the actions of health professionals, managers and politicians. Holland strongly advocates greater use of HSR and emphasises its ability to provide vital evidence on how to improve health services.

This highly informative and detailed book will strongly appeal to health service researchers, public health practitioners, clinicians, health-service managers, administrators and health policymakers.

Full table of contents

Contents: Preface 1. Health Services Research: A General Perspective 2. Health Services Research in the United States 3. Health and Health Services Research in the United Kingdom: A Historical Review 4. Personal Reflections 5. Organisational and Funding Issues 6. Health Services Research in Practice 7. Priorities in Medical Research: The House of Lords Select Committee 8. Key Questions 9. Conclusions Postscript Appendix: Department of Health Reports on Health Services Research Index

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