Raising awareness of health impact assessment

11th December 2020

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Gary Hunter

COVID-19 has brought human health and wellbeing into sharp focus.

In particular, it has raised public awareness of the relationship between the built environment and health. Access to green space, air quality and the concept of 'place' have been highlighted as critical issues of public concern. However, health impact assessment (HIA) and the consideration of health in environmental impact assessment is not widely understood by those outside these fields.

In October, IEMA released its latest Outlook Journal on HIA and planning, seeking to highlight important current and emerging practices in embedding health considerations in the planning and impact assessment processes. The journal contains a guest article from Public Health England (PHE) as a result of IEMA's collaboration with PHE on a separate guide, Health Impact Assessments in spatial planning, launched for English local authorities in October. IEMA Impact Assessment Network members provided detailed feedback and assisted with the development of the PHE guide.

IEMA and PHE co-hosted a webinar on 12 November to provide an overview of both guides, and IEMA is planning further collaboration with PHE as part of the ongoing planning reforms in England in the coming months. To get further involved with our working group on HIA, email [email protected]. Download the latest Outlook Journal issue at bit.ly/334uk3R, and read Health Impact Assessments in spatial planning at bit.ly/391BVnu

Image credit: iStock


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