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Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services

First published:
29 December 2023
Last updated:

Today, I am launching a consultation on the proposed health impact assessment regulations.

Current actions to address health inequalities are embedded across all activity owing to the strategic planning required by the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015. Our National indicator - Healthy Life Expectancy at birth including the gap between the least and most Deprived – provides an added impetus to focus on what more we can do to tackle this inequality in outcomes. Despite this, inequalities in relation to life expectancy remain wide.

The following milestone has been set in relation to healthy life expectancy to assist in measuring whether progress is being made towards the achievement of the well-being goals:

β€˜To increase the healthy life expectancy of adults and narrow the gap in healthy life expectancy between the least and the most deprived by at least 15% by 2050’

A Health Impact Assessment is a tool to help people assess the potential health effects of a policy, programme or project on a population, particularly on vulnerable or disadvantaged groups.

After being delayed by Brexit and the Covid-19 response, work has resumed to develop Regulations under the Public Health (Wales) Act 2017 which will require specified public bodies to carry out Health Impact Assessments in certain circumstances. In this regard, Wales will become one of the first countries in the world to place Health Impact Assessments on a statutory footing. 

The health impact assessment regulations consultation includes a copy of the draft Regulations for consideration along with clarification of the thinking behind the Regulations. 

The consultation is set out to address the following points: What we want to consider; To whom the regulations apply; When the regulations will apply; How a Heath Impact Assessment should be conducted; publishing a Health Impact Assessment and the role of Public Health Wales. 

A number of consultation questions are also included for stakeholder responses.

My officials will engage with a range of stakeholders to discuss the proposals and capture in-depth insight and feedback. 

This statement is being issued during recess in order to keep members informed. Should members wish me to make a further statement or to answer questions on this when the Senedd returns I would be happy to do so.