by Anne Mills
Proc. R. Soc. B 2014 281, 20140451, published 9 July 2014
Health economics is a relatively new discipline, though its antecedents can be traced back to William Petty FRS (1623-1687). In low- and middle-income countries, the growth of health economics has been strongly influenced by trends in health policy, especially among the international and bilateral agencies involved in supporting health sector development. Valuable and influential research has been done in areas such as cost-benefit and cost-effectiveness analysis, financing of healthcare, healthcare provision, and health systems analysis, but there has been insufficient questioning of the relevance of theories and policy recommendations in the rich world literature to the circumstances of poorer countries.