Urban environment and health inequalities


Impact of the urban environment on health inequalities

Those that live in the ‘least healthy’ urban areas are often those who suffer the most inequalities (economic, health, etc.) – so improving the quality of urban spaces can help to reduce inequalities.

How urban planning decisions affect different groups in the population in different ways – an intervention/ change might improve health for some while having no impact or making health worse for others. So we can prioritise changes that seek to improve conditions specifically for those who live in the worst conditions (rather than/ as well as changes that improve conditions for everyone). 


Tools to address health inequalities

  • Health impact assessments and community health need assessments can be used for local health equity monitoring processes- helping to identify, understand, access, and measure inequities. e.g. WHO Urban Health Equity Assessment and Response Tool – Urban HEART

Link to Ed’s videos about the benefits of using HIAs

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