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Occasional paper No. 1 : an overview of health impact assessment.

Grant, S. and Wilkinson, J. R. and Learmonth, A. (2001) 'Occasional paper No. 1 : an overview of health impact assessment.', Technical Report. Northern and Yorkshire Public Health Observatory, Stockton on Tees.


It is widely accepted that a range of factors determines the health of a population and that the greatest scope for improving the public’s health lies outside the control of the NHS. There is also a great deal of evidence that adverse factors affect groups in society who are more socially and physically vulnerable, such as people living in poverty, people from ethnic minorities, elderly people and women, to a much greater degree than other sections of the population. Health impact assessment (HIA) has been developed to identify those activities and policies likely to have major impacts on the health of a population in order to reduce the harmful effects on health and to increase the beneficial effects. Health impact assessment is a multidisciplinary process within which a range of evidence about the health effects of a proposal is considered in a structured framework. It takes into account the opinions and expectations of those who may be affected by a proposed policy. Potential health impacts of a proposal are analysed and used to influence the decision-making process. A health impact assessment is based on a broad model of health, which proposes that economic, political, social, psychological, and environmental factors determine population health. This report has been produced at a time when there is considerable interest in HIA in the region. The purpose of the report is to review what has been done so far and how the two new organisations in the region - the Public Health Observatory (PHO) and the Health Development Agency (HDA) - might contribute to this.

Item Type:Monograph (Technical Report)
Additional Information:North East Public Health Observatory occasional paper series ; 1.
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Record Created:02 Jun 2009 16:20
Last Modified:04 Nov 2011 09:27

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