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Health Impact Assessment

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About Our Approach

Health Impact Assessment (HIA) is a tool to help policymakers identify the likely health impacts of a decision in another field. It is a process that brings together data, public health expertise, and stakeholder input to identify potential health effects of proposed policies, programs, or projects. Based on an objective and thorough analysis of these potential effects, an HIA offers practical recommendations for ways to minimize risks and capitalize on opportunities to improve health. The team at the GHPC has more than a decade of combined experience in this emerging area.

Steps in the HIA Process*

  1. Screening—To determine whether an HIA is needed, feasible, and likely to be useful
  2. Scoping—To determine the important health effects, affected populations, available evidence, and roles of stakeholders
  3. Assessment— To analyze baseline conditions and likely health effects
  4. Recommendations— To develop feasible, evidence-based recommendations and a plan for implementing them
  5. Reporting— To disseminate findings to decision makers, affected communities, and other stakeholders
  6. Monitoring & Evaluation—To monitor the results and evaluate it in respect to the process, impact, and outcomes
*adapted from the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Pew Charitable Trusts and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. www.healthimpactproject.org

 

HIA Skillset

“I think I finally understand all of the main points of HIA. I found the training very helpful and interactive.”
- HIA Training Participant

 The GHPC can partner with interested organizations and offer the following:

  • Identification of appropriate HIA topics
  • Assistance in submitting applications for external funding
  • Identification of stakeholders to include in the process
  • Collaboration in conducting each step of the process

Trainings for potential HIA practitioner teams, stakeholders, partners, and decision-makers include:

  • Tailored training for the team and audience
  • Identification of case studies specific to the situation
  • Detailed meeting facilitation guide
  • Meeting materials, including handouts and agendas
  • Facilitation of the training

Tailored ongoing technical assistance is offered via phone and email to guide the team and partners in each step of the HIA process. GHPC staff will dedicate time to:

  • Communication– regularly scheduled phone calls to prepare for each step of the process
  • Resource sharing– sample materials for each step and associated activities to assist in preparation, implementation, and documentation
  • Material development and review– assistance in developing materials specifically for the HIA, and review of draft materials to provide feedback
  • Problem-solving– assistance in problem-solving any challenges that may arise during the process

The GHPC’s experience and expertise includes:

  • HIA practitioners who have conducted HIAs on a diverse set of topics, including large-scale redevelopments, transportation plans and policies, housing policy, and urban food systems.
  • HIA trainers and technical assistance providers with funding provided by the National Network of Public Health Institutes (NNPHI), Health Impact Project, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and various clients.
  • Contributors to the professional field and development of HIA including co-authors on Revised “Minimum Elements and Practice Standards for Health Impact Assessment” and provisional steering committee members of the Society of Practitioners of Health Impact Assessment (SOPHIA), the first professional association for HIA practitioners in North America.

Want more information on our Health Impact Assessment work?
Contact one of our experts, Elizabeth Fuller.