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Basic Measurements in Epidemiology

  1. Rate:
    Measures the occurrence of some particular event in a population during a given time period. Comprises of a numerator, denominator, time period and multiplier. Numerator is a part of the denominator. E.g death rate, birth rate etc.
  2. Ratio:
    Expresses a relation in size between two random quantities. Numerator is not a part of denominator and there is no specified time element. E.g. – sex ratio, doctor – nurse ratio.
  3. Proportion:
    Indicates the relation in magnitude of a part to the whole. Numerator is a part of the denominator but there is no element of time. It is expressed as a percentage.

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