ASSESSMENT IN HIAs Elizabeth J. Fuller, DrPH , MSPH Georgia Health Policy Center . Assessment: Purpose. The purpose of assessment is to characterize the potential health effects of alternative decisions based on available evidence.
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The health impact assessment process is use to rate and rank potential impacts in order to help prioritize mitigation
Existing population demographic data and health statistics, such as census data, vital statistics, agency reports
Environmental measures, to assess hazardous agents or conditions
Maps, to reveal “hot spots” or spatial differences
Qualitative Methods, such as focus groups, key informant interviews etc..
Consequently, discussion and debate on the meaning and sufficiency of the characteristics and the evidence required to make a particular characterization should be considered a necessary and useful part of a transparent HIA process.
Access to data and necessary information is one of the key ways in which stakeholders can contribute to the HIA.
Stakeholders should also be given opportunity to reflect and comment on the effect characterization process
Remember that HIA is an independent/transparent process, and be clear about the limitations of your data and/or characterization of effects.
HIA is not an advocacy process, however the findings can be used for advocacy.
In your process evaluation, be sure to document any barriers you faced and successes you had in data collection, including decisions about collecting original data.
Document the process of categorizing the effects, including stakeholder and decision-maker feedback