The volume of cancer-related health services research articles appears to have been relatively stable during the 1980s, but increased sharply in the 1990s according to Medline searches from 1980 to 1997. In 1997, there were more than 1,200 articles indexed that addressed health services research issues related to cancer (Figure 7.1). Although the number of health services research citations increased during this period, by 1997 they represented less than 3 percent of all cancer-related citations indexed in the medical literature (Figure 7.2). These trends reflect publications in English, but not necessarily articles written by U.S. investigators. Much of the literature reviewed in Chapter 5 was conducted in the United Kingdom and is represented here. Figures 7.1 and 7.2 therefore reflect trends in the general medical literature, not necessarily trends in the United States. These trends must be interpreted with caution because they may reflect changes in the way MESH headings are applied to index the literature rather than real increases in cancer-related health services research.
BOX 7.2 Topics in Health Services Research
Health services research may address, or be conducted for the purposes of understanding or improving, areas such as the following:
SOURCE: HSRProj, 1998.