Evaluating the health equity impact of policies

About this research and why it is a public health priority

Health inequalities in England have widened since 2010. By 2019, for the first time in over a century, life expectancy amongst women living in disadvantaged areas had fallen and inequalities in children’s and young people’s health were deteriorating.  In this context, it is important to evaluate the impact on health equity of diverse national and local policies outside the health field and of interventions that specifically aim to improve aspects of population health.  LiLaC members are undertaking a wide range of studies in this field. 

Research Highlights and selected impacts

Selected publications

Barr, B; Higgerson, J. Whitehead. M (2017) ‘Investigating the Impact of the English Health Inequalities Strategy: Time Trend Analysis’. BMJ 358: j3310. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.j3310 

Wickham S, Bentley L, Rose T, Whitehead M, Taylor-Robinson D, Barr B (2020) Effects on mental health of a UK welfare reform – Universal Credit: A longitudinal controlled study. Lancet Public Health. 5(3):e157-e164. doi:10.1016/S2468-2667(20)30026-8 https://doi.org/10.1016/S2468-2667(20)30026-8 

Popay J, Whitehead M, Carr-Hill R, Dibben C, Dixon P, Halliday E, et al. The impact on health inequalities of approaches to community engagement in the New Deal for Communities regeneration initiative: a mixed-methods evaluation. Public Health Res 2015;3(12) https://europepmc.org/article/nbk/nbk321028  

Halliday, E., Barr, B., Higgerson, J., Holt, V., Ortiz-Nunez, A. and Ward, F., 2018. Using local authority entrance charges to tackle inequalities in physical activity? A qualitative study of leisure and public health perspectives. Journal of Public Health40(3), pp.567-572. https://doi.org/10.1093/pubmed/fdx124 

Higgerson, J., Halliday, E., Ortiz-Nunez, A., Brown, R. and Barr, B Impact of free access to leisure facilities and community outreach on inequalities in physical activity: a quasi-experimental study.  Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. 2018 Feb 12; 72(3): 252-258  http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech-2017-209882 

Ponsford, R. Collins, M. Egan, M. Halliday, E. Lewis, S. Orton L. Powell, K. Barnes, A. Salway, S. Townsend, A; Whitehead, M. Popay, J. (2020) Power, Control, Communities and Health Inequalities Part II: Measuring Shifts in Power. Health Promotion International https://academic.oup.com/heapro/advance-article/doi/10.1093/heapro/daaa019/6056665