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Clinical prediction models play an increasingly important role in contemporary clinical care, by informing healthcare professionals, patients and their relatives about outcome risks, with the aim to facilitate (shared) medical decision making and improve health outcomes. Diagnostic prediction models aim to calculate an individual's risk that a disease is already present, whilst prognostic prediction models aim to calculate the risk of particular heath states occurring in the future. This article serves as a primer for diagnostic and prognostic clinical prediction models, by discussing the basic terminology, some of the inherent challenges, and the need for validation of predictive performance and the evaluation of impact of these models in clinical care.

Original publication




Journal article


J clin epidemiol

Publication Date





142 - 145


Diagnostic, Model impact, Model performance, Prediction models, Prognostic, Reporting guidelines, Validation