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Human Development Index


Human development can be viewed as the process of achieving an optimum level of health and well-being. It includes physical, biological, mental, emotional, social, educational, economic, and cultural components. Only some of these are expressed in the Human Development Index, a composite scale that has three dimensions: life expectancy at birth, adult literacy rate and mean years of schooling, and income as measured by real gross domestic product per capita. Like all one-dimensional scales that attempt to measure multiple complex variables, it is flawed by inherent inaccuracies, but it is nonetheless a useful comparative measure of the well-being of a population.

John M. Last

(see also: Assessment of Health Status; Health Measurement Scales )

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