|Health in All Policies Projects|
HIA is not the only tool to accomplish HIP’s mission of considering health and equity in decision-making. HIP often conducts a range of activities that are related to HIA, but not always as part of the full HIA process. For example, we may be asked by community organizations to identify indicators for use in a planning process or we may be asked by a government agency to provide feedback on a proposed plan/project. Given the resources necessary to conduct an HIA, being responsive to these types of requests ensures that health and equity are considered in more contexts. Currently, this type of work falls into the broad category of “Health in All Policies.”
For community organizations, public agencies, and others interested in exploring how to integrate health in decision-making, HIP can conduct the following activities:
Human Impact Partners, with funding from the Resources Legacy Fund, convened a statewide group to develop a set of health and equity performance metrics that assess the outcomes of land use and transportation changes made by Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs). In 2011, HIP and partners released the final metrics and worked with stakeholders around the state to promote their use in regional Sustainable Communities Strategies (SCS). The state’s 18 MPOS are required to complete Sustainable Communities Strategies to be in compliance with state laws around reducing greenhouse gases. The goal is that the metrics are used in the SCS process as criteria to judge health and equity impacts of various transportation scenarios.
For the final version of the Health and Equity Metrics for Metropolitan Planning Organizations to consider in their Sustainable Communities Strategy/Regional Transportation process, click here. For a two-page summary, click here. For a summary of how SCS plans released to date cover the 13 prioritized metrics, click here.
Youth United for Community Action (YUCA) and the Community Development Institute (CDI) led a collaborative community-based planning process to influence the redevelopment site of a future transit station. Human Impact Partners facilitated a process in which community health concerns related to the redevelopment were prioritized and also worked with YUCA, CDI and others, including San Mateo County Health Systems, to collect relevant existing conditions data.
Under the Affordable Care Act, non-profit hospitals are required to conduct a community health needs assessment (CHNA) to prioritize health needs using public input and to adopt an implementation strategy to address those needs. HIP worked with the three non-profit hospitals in Marin County, California, through the Healthy Marin Partnership (HMP), to conduct their 2013 CHNA. For this project, we collected and summarized data about health needs.This included: 1) a list of over 150 county-wide health indicators; 2) a demographics and county-wide health indicators report; 3) a report on 29 health indicators at the sub-county level; and 4) a summary of focus groups conducted to obtain input regarding health needs. Key informant interviews about health needs in Marin are also available.
All this information is summarized in Health Need Summaries and a matrix that scores those needs against a set of criteria and lists health drivers. Using this data, we worked with HMP and other stakeholders to create a list of prioritized health needs. A summary of HIP’s process is available.
The Community and Economic Development Agency of Oakland, CA was developing a Specific Plan for the Central Estuary area, and required the consideration of health impacts in developing the Specific Plan. HIP was on the planning team that contracted with the City to develop the Plan. HIP’s role on the team was to provide health expertise throughout the planning process, to conduct the health analysis component of the existing conditions assessment and impact analysis of plan alternatives, and to provide planning and design strategies in the creation of the Plan.
Working with the Labor Project for Working Families, Human Impact Partners conducted an analysis of the health impacts of parental leave on infants, children and mothers. Several bills being considered in the 2011 California legislature proposed changes to paid family leave and HIP’s research was used to inform legislators of the potential health impact of these bills. See the fact sheet and blog post about our research.
Region 9 of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) asked the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, CA to incorporate HIA into Environmental Impact Assessment processes on proposed expansion projects in order to comprehensively analyze potential health impacts and to inform mitigation options. With the goals of increasing understanding of and support for the concept of conducting HIA as part of the EIS/EIR process, the EPA offered to develop a model of an HIA Scope with public input. The EPA contracted with Human Impact Partners to develop this HIA scope and the process included public meetings to bring stakeholders together for input. The scope is now publicly available on the EPA website by clicking here. Read the full report.
In late 2011, the Los Angeles Harbor Department released the Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) for the BNSF Southern California International Gateway project, an intermodal rail facility near the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach where international cargo containers would be transferred directly onto trains bound for inland destinations. HIP, on behalf of community partners, provided comments related to the health evidence supporting potential impacts of the proposed SCIG project and the potential implications of the rise of transloading practices for the DEIR findings. Click here for the comment letter and here for a one-page summary of the project.