Place and Health

Why Conditions Where We Live, Learn, Work and Play Matter

On May 11, 2001, from 12:30 p.m. – 2 p.m. ET, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Vulnerable Populations Portfolio hosted a roundtable discussion among experts in the fields of housing and neighborhoods, violence prevention, and the growing use of health impact assessments to determine the health implications of community development and other programs and policies. This webinar was the third in a series to examine the non-medical factors that shape health.

The webinar provided highlights from topical issue briefs and specific examples from communities to address such questions as:

  • What are health impact assessments and how are they being used in communities to inform policy decisions and make our communities healthier?
  • Apart from access to health insurance, how does our work affect our health? Why are housing and neighborhoods important for keeping us healthy?
  • Beyond personal safety, how does exposure to violence affect our health? How can preventing violence influence the health of whole communities?
  • Why and how are new sectors—community development, housing, transportation and city planners—getting involved in discussions about health?

David Williams, Ph.D., M.P.H, professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard University, moderated the discussion with an expert panel that included:

  • Paula Braveman, M.D., M.P.H., University of California, San Francisco
  • Susan Egerter, Ph.D., University of California, San Francisco
  • Ben Hecht, president and CEO, Living Cities, New York, NY
  • Gary Slutkin, M.D., executive director, CeaseFire
  • Aaron Wernham, M.D., director, Health Impact Project

Webinar Series: This webinar was the third in a three-part series exploring how conditions where we live, learn, work and play affect our health. Use the hashtag #healthissocial to continue the conversation on Twitter.

This series built on the work of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Commission to Build a Healthier America. Learn more about the Commission’s 10 recommendations by downloading the Commission’s report, Beyond Health Care: New Directions to a Healthier America.