Since the early 1990s, disease management (DM) has been one of the most heralded - and least rigorously evaluated - developments in health service delivery. The four related articles in this issue, together with the authors' other work, go a long way towards putting DM evaluation on solid statistical ground (Linden 2006; Linden & Adams 2006; Linden et al.2006). They should be read carefully by anyone purchasing or evaluating a DM programme and should raise the bar for evaluations in this area, which are often little more than marketing dressed up as research.
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