Major update of the International Best Practice Principles for health impact assessment

Cover of the International Best Practice Principles: Health Impact Assessment document

The International Association for Impact Assessment has published revised International Bets Practice Principles: Health Impact Assessment.

This influential guide has been updated for the first time in fifteen years to reflect the evolution of health impact assessment practice. Mirko Winkler led the revision and the team included Francesca Viliani, Astrid Knoblauch, Ben Cave, Mark Divall, Geetha Ramesh, Peter Furu and I .

Key Citations

The Principles are accompanied by an updated IAIA Key Citations document. This sets out important health impact assessment milestone publications, guidance documents and journal articles .

The new guide complements the findings of the international survey on Current Global Health Impact Assessment Practice that was published last year .

References

Winkler, M., Viliani, F., Knoblauch, A., Cave, B., Divall, M., Ramesh, G., Harris-Roxas, B., & Furu, P. (2021). International Best Practice Principles: Health Impact Assessment (2nd edition) (Special Publication Series). International Association for Impact Assessment.
Winkler, M., Viliani, F., Cave, B., Divall, M., Knoblauch, A., Harris-Roxas, B., Ramesh, G., & Furu, P. (2021). Key Citations: Health Impact Assessment (Key Citations Series). International Association for Impact Assessment.
Winkler, M. S., Furu, P., Viliani, F., Cave, B., Divall, M., Ramesh, G., Harris-Roxas, B., & Knoblauch, A. M. (2020). Current Global Health Impact Assessment Practice. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(9), 2988. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17092988

Current Global Health Impact Assessment Practice

Mirko Winkler led a team that undertook a survey of 122 HIA practitioners across 29 countries . The findings highlight that:

  • HIA is being used worldwide
  • Capacity is concentrated at the beginner and intermediate levels, though a higher proportion of respondents from Europe reported having more than ten years of HIA experience
  • there is a need for more advanced capacity building and training offerings internationally
  • strengthening the policies and legal frameworks under which HIAs are undertaken remains relevant.
Origin countries of respondents; and the number of respondents per region with corresponding years of HIA practice experience
Regions where HIA assignments were conducted; and fields of HIA application
Types of health assessments conducted; and decision-maker on type of health assessment to conduct

Twenty-four percent of respondents were from the Asia Pacific, and practices across our region are reflected in the overall results.

Health Impact Assessment: A practical guide that I wrote with Patrick Harris, Elizabeth Harris, and Lynn Kemp was identified as the fifth most-used HIA guidance internationally, after WHO guides, Martin Birley’s book on HIA , and the IAIA Best Practice Principles .

In general respondents were split on whether HIA’s use is continuing to increase or has stagnated, a debate that has relevance across the Asia Pacific region. Of particular important to our region, the paper emphasises that:

Finally, there is an increasing recognition of the role that biodiversity and ecosystem services play in the relationship “healthy planet, healthy people”, and the role that impact assessments play. In an outlook for the future, and additionally to providing a framework for safeguarding health in sustainable development, HIA has the potential to be contributory to the operationalisation of “planetary health”.

Source:

References