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Health Impact Assessment (HIA)

What about health?

Factors such as access to safe, affordable and reliable transportation, education, places to be physically active, housing, and healthy food can be as important to people’s health as access to medical care. Understanding this is prompting people in health sectors to collaborate with people in sectors that have not traditionally been seen as playing a role in health - such as transportation, land use planning, education, environment, and economic development - to engage in a process called Health Impact Assessment, or HIA.

An HIA is defined as “a collaborative and systematic approach used to consider the effects of a policy, plan, or project on the health of a population” and involves completing 6 steps: screening, scoping, assessment, recommendations, reporting and monitoring. The Vermont Department of Health, through a grant from the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), has offered to work with the City of Burlington to conduct an HIA on the plan BTV South End project.

An initial stakeholder meeting was held on January 9th to begin identifying health concerns that local business owners and residents would like to have considered in the plan BTV South End HIA. Ideas, thoughts, concerns related to health were shared and collected through February’s and the VDH created a Health Impact Assessment report in August 2015 with recommendations for the City to consider for ways to maximize positive health outcomes in the south end. 

Click here to view the Vermont Department of Health's Health Impact Assessment for planBTV South End. 

Check out the slides from the January 9, 2015 meeting kick-off meeting. The recommendations of the Health Impact Assessment were presented to the Planning Commission at their January 12, 2016 meeting.