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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trusts Launch National Initiative to Advance Policies That Promote Health
Date:10/20/2009

WASHINGTON, Oct. 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and The Pew Charitable Trusts (Pew) today announced the launch of the Health Impact Project, a national initiative designed to promote the use of health impact assessments (HIAs) as a decision-making tool for policymakers. HIAs are a flexible, data-driven approach that identify the health consequences of new policies and develop practical strategies to enhance their health benefits and minimize adverse effects. The Health Impact Project (www.healthimpactproject.org), a 4.5-year initiative that is funded by a $7.2 million grant from RWJF to Pew to operate and administer the project, is accepting proposals for up to 15 HIA demonstrations ranging from $25,000 to $150,000.

HIAs are an effective way to incorporate health into the decisions made by sectors that do not traditionally focus on these outcomes -- such as transportation, planning, education or housing. This strategy helps people lead healthier lives and creates healthier, safer communities. For example, an HIA for a new road could measure its impact on air quality, childhood asthma, and injury rates, then address them early in the planning process.

"To help people make healthier choices and stem the rising tide of chronic disease, health needs to be factored into public policy and other decisions that affect and influence how we live, work, learn and play," said Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, M.D., M.B.A., president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. "The HIA process can foster a new way of thinking that puts health at the forefront of public policy."

"The project marks an exciting development in the evolution of our relationship with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation," said Rebecca Rimel, president and CEO of The Pew Charitable Trusts. "This collaboration brings to bear valuable resources to establish health impact asse
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SOURCE Pew Charitable Trusts
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