PIF member Public Health England (PHE) has updated a tool to help tackle health inequalities.

The Health Equity Assessment Tool (HEAT) was reviewed in 2019/20 following requests for a practical framework that could be used with a range of stakeholders to identify and support local action. 

A need was identified for a resource to enable professionals to systematically address inequalities and equity in programmes and services.

This could then be used to drive change and generate improvements.

HEAT can be used in a variety of contexts. 

This could include completing a health equity audit for an individual screening service or to assess and address specific inequalities issues associated with a change in service delivery, for example, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Heat includes:

  • HEAT – full version
  • HEAT – simplified version
  • An e-learning module, co-produced with Health Education England, that will equip professionals with essential skills in undertaking a HEAT assessment
  • Practice examples, demonstrating applications of the tool and the main benefits of applying it in different work areas

It is designed to be a clear and straightforward format for professionals across the health and wider system landscape to assess health inequalities in relation to their work or service.

It also provides support to determine concrete actions to tackle these inequalities.

HEAT can be adapted for use across a range of different work programmes and services.

It encourages the user to review their work six to 12 months after the initial assessment, enabling consideration of lessons identified and areas for continued focus.

For more information on health inequalities and how to use the refreshed HEAT tool click on the link below.

Public Health England