Key decisions regarding the introduction and optimal use of health technologies often are made on an ad hoc basis. Quantitative information on effectiveness, if incorporated into the decision-making process, would establish a reasoned and defensible basis for the introduction and optimal use of therapeutic technologies. Utility measures provide a single summary score of effectiveness which, when combined with cost information, permits the calculation of cost-utility ratios for alternative technologies. A number of techniques have been developed to elicit utilities, including standard gamble, time trade-off, rating scales, the Quality of Well-Being Scale, and the Health Utility Index. No single method has been accepted yet as the gold standard. Selection therefore must be guided by the specific objectives of the assessment.