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Article

Health Impact Assessments in Spain: Have They Been Effective?

1
Department of Nursing, University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), 48940 Leioa, Spain
2
OPIK-Research Group for Social Determinants of Health and Demographic Change, University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), 48940 Leioa, Spain
3
Department of Sociology 2, University of the Basque Country, 48940 Leioa, Spain
4
Department of Health, Basque Government, 01010 Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain
5
Department of Health, Basque Government, 20013 Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(8), 2959; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17082959
Received: 22 March 2020 / Revised: 18 April 2020 / Accepted: 20 April 2020 / Published: 24 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Impact Assessment)
Background: Health impact assessment (HIA) has scarcely been developed in Spain, in comparison with other European countries. Moreover, little is known about the effectiveness of HIA, taking into account direct impacts—changes on the decision-making process—as well as indirect impacts or those related to the process outcomes. From this broad perspective of HIA usefulness, the purpose was to assess the effectiveness of five HIAs carried out in Spain at the local level, and the role played by context and process factors on these impacts. Methods: We carried out a qualitative study based on 14 interviews to HIAs participants from different sectors. A documentary review and nonparticipant observation techniques were implemented for an in depth understanding. Results: The direct effectiveness of the HIAs was partial, but they had indirect effectiveness in all cases. The institutional and socio-political context, however, was not favorable to effectiveness. The elements of the process were largely determined by the context, although their influence, mediated by the role of proactive individuals, favored the effectiveness of the HIAs. Conclusions: When assessing HIA effectiveness, it is important to take into account a broad perspective on the nature of impacts and those factors influencing direct and indirect effectiveness. In Spain, the institutional and sociopolitical context was less favorable to HIA effectiveness than process-related factors. In order to implement the Health in All Policies strategy, will be necessary to improve context-related factors, such as institutional facilitators for HIA and democratic quality. View Full-Text
Keywords: health impact assessment; effectiveness; intersectoral action for health health impact assessment; effectiveness; intersectoral action for health
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MDPI and ACS Style

Morteruel, M.; Bacigalupe, A.; Aldasoro, E.; Larrañaga, I.; Serrano, E. Health Impact Assessments in Spain: Have They Been Effective? Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 2959. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17082959

AMA Style

Morteruel M, Bacigalupe A, Aldasoro E, Larrañaga I, Serrano E. Health Impact Assessments in Spain: Have They Been Effective? International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(8):2959. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17082959

Chicago/Turabian Style

Morteruel, Maite, Amaia Bacigalupe, Elena Aldasoro, Isabel Larrañaga, and Elena Serrano. 2020. "Health Impact Assessments in Spain: Have They Been Effective?" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 8: 2959. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17082959

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