Health impact assessment

Health impact assessment

Health impact assessment (HIA) aims at studying upstream health determinants in an integrated way rather than concentrating on single risk factors. Haiku overall objective is to provide decision-makers with sound information on implications on health of any given policy.

Health impact assessment (HIA) can be defined as follows:

“The assessment and measurement of the social, economic and other policies that influence the determinants of health, and through these, the health of a population.” Health Impact Assessment (HIA) is a combination of procedures, methods and tools by which a policy, program or project may be judged as to itâ€TMs potential effects on the health of a population, and the distribution of those effects within the population. The general objectives of HIA are to improve knowledge about the potential health impact of policies or programmed, to inform decision-makers and affected people, and to facilitate adjustment of proposed policies in order to mitigate the negative health effects and maximize the positive effects. As such, HIA can contribute to transparency in policies, as well as to reduction of health inequities.

Scientific knowledge on the adverse effects of several environmental factors on the population is in some cases substantial, but often regulatory policies fail to reflect such knowledge adequately. Systematic assessments of health effects are needed to inform the development of policies and to include health in other sectors agenda. Legislation and legally binding agreements at the international level make provision for HIA in policy making, but commonly agreed tools for carrying out HIAs are not yet available.

The HMS programme provides tools and advice to Member States through building capacity for integrated impact assessments. The programme also contributes with evidence on the expected health benefits and risks associated with these developments to increase the profile of health within other sectorsâ€TM agenda.

Methods and tools for HIA development of methodologies as part of capacity building in HIA

Development of a legal framework including the establishment of a new protocol for Strategic Environment Assessment (SEA). Precautionary policies in public health

including research and promotion of scientific discussion Technical assistance to countries
including carrying out National Environmental Health Performance Reviews and country studies Investigation of environmental health outbreaks.


In your opinion do you believe that HIA is the perfect combination of the integration of epidemiology and risk assessment into a more powerful approach to understanding the causes of disease in the 21st Century?

* Note to the Writer: Base on the material given answer the above in at least 250 words”

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