Objective: Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and scleroderma (SSc) are chronic rheumatic disorders with detrimental effects on health-related quality of life. Our objective was to assess health values (utilities) from the general public for health states common to people with PsA and SSc for economic evaluations.Methods: Adult subjects from the general population in a Midwestern city (N = 218) completed the SF-12 Health Survey and computer-assisted 0-100 rating scale (RS), time trade-off (TTO, range: 0.0-1.0) and standard gamble (SG, range: 0.0-1.0) utility assessments for several hypothetical PsA and SSc health states.Results: Subjects included 135 (62%) females, 143 (66%) Caucasians, and 62 (28%) African-Americans. The mean (SD) scores for the SF-12 Physical Component Summary scale were 52.9 (8.3) and for the SF-12 Mental Component Summary scale were 49.0 (9.1), close to population norms. The mean RS, TTO, and SG scores for PsA health states varied with severity, ranging from 20.2 to 63.7 (14.4-20.3) for the RS 0.29 to 0.78 (0.24-0.31) for the TTO, and 0.48 to 0.82 (0.24-0.34) for the SG. The mean RS, TTO, and SG scores for SSc health states were 25.3-69.7 (15.2-16.3) for the RS, 0.36-0.80 (0.25-0.31) for the TTO, and 0.50-0.81 (0.26-0.32) for the SG, depending on disease severity.Conclusion: Health utilities for PsA and SSc health states as assessed from the general public reflect the severity of the diseases. These descriptive findings could have implications regarding comparative effectiveness research for tests and treatments for PsA and SSc. © 2010 Khanna et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.