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Cost-Benefit Analysis: A method of comparing the cost of a program with its expected benefits in dollars (or other currency). The benefit-to-cost ratio is a measure of total return expected per unit of money spent. This analysis generally excludes consideration of factors that are not measured ultimately in economic terms. Cost effectiveness compares alternative ways to achieve a specific set of results.Risk Assessment: The qualitative or quantitative estimation of the likelihood of adverse effects that may result from exposure to specified health hazards or from the absence of beneficial influences. (Last, Dictionary of Epidemiology, 1988)Costs and Cost Analysis: Absolute, comparative, or differential costs pertaining to services, institutions, resources, etc., or the analysis and study of these costs.Health Care Costs: The actual costs of providing services related to the delivery of health care, including the costs of procedures, therapies, and medications. It is differentiated from HEALTH EXPENDITURES, which refers to the amount of money paid for the services, and from fees, which refers to the amount charged, regardless of cost.Decision Making: The process of making a selective intellectual judgment when presented with several complex alternatives consisting of several variables, and usually defining a course of action or an idea.Treatment Outcome: Evaluation undertaken to assess the results or consequences of management and procedures used in combating disease in order to determine the efficacy, effectiveness, safety, and practicability of these interventions in individual cases or series.Prospective Studies: Observation of a population for a sufficient number of persons over a sufficient number of years to generate incidence or mortality rates subsequent to the selection of the study group.Drug Costs: The amount that a health care institution or organization pays for its drugs. It is one component of the final price that is charged to the consumer (FEES, PHARMACEUTICAL or PRESCRIPTION FEES).Cost of Illness: The personal cost of acute or chronic disease. The cost to the patient may be an economic, social, or psychological cost or personal loss to self, family, or immediate community. The cost of illness may be reflected in absenteeism, productivity, response to treatment, peace of mind, or QUALITY OF LIFE. It differs from HEALTH CARE COSTS, meaning the societal cost of providing services related to the delivery of health care, rather than personal impact on individuals.