Health impact assessment

A health impact assessment helps to determine the effects a planning development will have on the health and wellbeing of the local community.

It is required for all large scale developments that meet the following requirements:

  • residential development – 200 or more dwellings (if number of units not specified then on sites of 4.ha or more)
  • non residential development with a floor space of 10,000m2 or more or area of 2ha or more.


A health impact assessment will look at both positive and negative impacts and can include: 

  • Health evaluations - for example, does the development provide enough space, light, and heat for an appropriate amount of people? Does it contribute stress, noise, or pollution to the local area? 
  • Activity - does the development encourage walking, cycling, and sustainable transport for the local area, or does it contribute to congestion?
  • Infrastructure and services - is the development supported by local services such as healthcare, education and employment, or does it contribute to these areas?

You must address how your development will intend to improve or contribute to the health and wellbeing of the local community and not put a strain on space or resources. 

In summary, your assessment must:

  • assess health and wellbeing impacts on communities in and next to a development
  • show any possible changes in the spread of any health impacts
  • suggest actions to reduce negative health impacts, referencing any vulnerable groups
  • suggest actions to increase positive health impacts, referencing any vulnerable groups

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