This editorial provides a review of the current ways in which health economics is impacting on policy and reviews some of the key ethical and value-judgmental issues that commonly arise in and as a result of the work of economists. It also briefly highlights the contributions of the authors of this special issue of the journal, all of which illustrate how economists have approached ethical issues in health service policy (both in its financing and its delivery), and some of which explore the major methodological matters that arise and go on to discuss their potential as sources of conflict or harmony with other approaches to the same questions.
- Health economics
- value judgments
- resource allocation
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Anthony J Culyer is Professor of Economics, Department of Economics & Related Subjects, University of York, Heslington, York.