9 September 2011

Improving Health in the USA: The Role of Health Impact Assessment

The US National Research Council has released a report on HIA. They were funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, the California Endowment, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop a comprehensive process for HIA. It "calls for increased education and training, more emphasis on stakeholder involvement and reducing health disparities, and collaboration at all levels of government to support the incorporation of health considerations into decision-making".

I'd be interested to know what you think. Much of the report's content will seem familiar to those who have developed HIA guidance elsewhere. I think the process of developing contextually-specific guidance, and the discussions and debates had as part of that process, are often more important than their actual content. Worth a look.


  1. I liked the recommendation on societal awareness and educatio with a focus on the general public as well as polictmakers and professionals. I think we don't specifically think about the public as a consituency except when we engage local communities when doing a HIA. While there is talk about educating policymakers/policticians and non-health professionals there is little or no focus on citizens/general public.

    I like your point about the process of discussion and debate beings as important as the final findings particular for those of us who have been doing and/or reading about HIA for a while.

  2. Good points Sal. Genuine public engagement still seems to be unrealised in most forms of IA.