This chapter provides an overview of the descriptive epidemiology of multimorbidity in terms of its prevalence and distribution within the population and its associations with mortality, functional status and quality of life, and health services use and healthcare quality
and safety. The analysis draws on both the published literature and on data about the prevalence of 40 long term conditions from 1.75 million primary care patients in Scotland. The implications for health service organisation and the measurement of health system performance
for people with multimorbidity are discussed.