Are Health Impact Assessments (HIAs) worthwhile?
Answering this question involves evaluating HIAs, and the purpose of this paper is to provide guidance on the evaluation of HIAs in New Zealand.
It brings together a diverse range of national and international views to provide a starting point for those undertaking HIA evaluation.
In particular, the paper builds on the two New Zealand guides to conducting HIAs (Public Health Advisory Committee 2005; Ministry of Health 2007), which emphasise evaluation as the fourth stage of HIA.
The paper looks at the types of evaluation of HIA and discusses the evaluation tools available.
The focus here is on policy-level HIA, in keeping with the current focus in New Zealand. However, evaluations of project-level HIA are also referred to, because this is the focus of much of the international literature.
This paper was prepared by Dr Ruth Cunningham (Public Health Medicine Registrar), Associate Professor Louise Signal and Sharron Bowers for the Ministry of Health’s Health Impact Assessment Support Unit.