Public Health Agency of Canada’s Health Equity Policy Division is pleased to share the public release of a new report: Monitoring changes in health inequalities through time: A scan of international initiatives and rapid review of scientific literature.
As the lead of Health Inequalities Reporting Initiative, Public Health Agency of Canada aims to begin tracking changes in health inequalities over time. Tracking changes in health inequalities over time can help inform programs and policies and assess if they are working fairly for everyone. It can also provide insights on where to focus health promotion interventions to support those most in need.
This rapid literature review helps fill in evidence gaps by identifying best practices for tracking health inequalities over time. In total, we reviewed 19 international initiatives and 14 Canadian studies that assessed health inequalities over time and identified over 20 promising practices.
- Clarifying the purpose of the analyses for public health practice, and establishing analytic objectives accordingly.
- Providing a clear rationale for the selection of health and social indicators for monitoring.
- Selecting data sources with sufficient follow-up time frames to feasibly observe meaningful changes in health inequalities over time.
- Providing a systematic description of rates and inequalities, by group and time periods, respectively.
- Tracking changes in absolute and relative inequalities.
- Providing enough methodological detail to allow for replication.
- Using various data visualization techniques to convey key findings.