A generic characteristic of something or someone. In health economics, it is often an element of human function such as activities of daily living which may form components of a measure of health status. Sometimes called 'dimension of health' or 'domain of health'. In conjoint analysis, an attribute may be part of a vignette describing the character of, say, a service that is being valued. In clinical research, the term is used to indicate an independent variable that cannot be manipulated by the researcher. Note also the verbal usage: 'to attribute' is to assign a consequence to a cause or an idea to its author.

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