Friday, February 19, 2010

Health Impact Assessments

Health Impact Assessments are a way to measure policy as to whether it will make people healthier or sicker. The post linked here about HIA refers to a report in England discussing a fairer and healthier society.

What is missing in that report is the reality that we don't have governments, or parties in power, that are promoting participatory decision-making. Connecting what has been done in Porto Alegre, as an example, to the realities of decision-making in most communities will be a challenge.

The reality is that a fairer society, a just society, is healthier than what we have now. Ensuring that health equity is a part of all HIA processes will be important. In Albuquerque, and in New Mexico there are attempts to promote health impact assessments in a variety of areas. We need to ensure equity focused HIA if we are going to create good lives for all.

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