Expert Profile

Aaron Wernham

Director, Health Impact Project
The Pew Charitable Trusts

Dr. Aaron Wernham is the director of the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, established to promote and support the use of Health Impact Assessment (HIA) in the United States.

Dr. Wernham was a member of the National Research Council’s Committee on HIA, led multiple HIAs and HIA trainings, and collaborated with and advised numerous state and federal agencies on HIA. Prior to joining Pew, Dr. Wernham served as a senior policy analyst with the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium where he headed a joint state-tribal-federal working group that developed HIA guidance for federal and state environmental regulatory and permitting efforts.

Dr. Wernham received his medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco and his master’s degree in health and medical sciences from the University of California, Berkeley. He is board certified in family medicine, and served as clinical faculty in a University of California, Davis family practice residency program.

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News Room

July 9, 2012

Funding Available to Bring Health into Decisions in Non-Health Sectors

The Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, announced a call for proposals for grants to conduct health impact assessments (HIAs).

June 26, 2012

Snacks, Drinks at School May Be Key to Kids Maintaining a Healthy Weight

Updating national nutrition standards for snack foods and beverages sold in schools could help students maintain a healthy weight and increase food service revenue, according to a health impact assessment released by the Kids’ Safe & Healthful Foods Project and the Health Impact Project.

May 2, 2012

Fracking ‘Health Challenges’ to Be Examined by U.S. Advisers

Aaron Wernham, project director of the Health Impact Project, comments on health impact assessments in a Bloomberg article about health concerns related to fracking.

April 4, 2012

Report Finds Many Existing Laws Provide Unexpected Opportunities to Assess Health When Making Decisions in Other Sectors

A report released by the Health Impact Project finds that a wide variety of existing laws offer important opportunities to improve Americans’ health.

October 19, 2011

Thinking Outside the Doctor’s Office to Build a Strong, Healthy Nation

In an op-ed in The Hill, Aaron Wernham, project director for the Health Impact Project, argues in favor of taking health into account when making decisions that shape the world outside the doctor’s office.

September 9, 2011

Making the Case for Health Impact Assessments

Aaron Wernham, director of the Health Impact Project, is quoted in a ScienceInsider article covering the recent "ringing endorsement" of health impact assessments by the National Academies' National Research Council.

September 9, 2011

Health Impact Reviews Urged for Developments

A Dallas Morning News article about a recent National Academy of Sciences report recommending additional health impact assessments quotes Aaron Wernham, project director of the Health Impact Project.

May 12, 2011

Oregon Farm to School Bill Would Benefit Health Through Job Creation, Study Finds

A bill in Oregon that would provide incentives to deliver fresh local food to schools would improve the health of the state’s residents and, at the same time, create hundreds of new farm-industry jobs over a five- to 10-year period, according to a study released by Upstream Public Health in Portland.

May 9, 2011

Health Impact Assessments Are Needed In Decision Making About Environmental And Land-Use Policy (Health Affairs Article)

Aaron Wernham ,director of the Health Impact Project, argues that officials at the federal, state, and local levels should consult health experts and consider using health impact assessments when their decisions on such issues as urban planning, land use, and environmental regulation have the potential to directly affect the conditions in which people live and work.

March 15, 2011

Grants Available to Build Healthier Communities Through Informed Decision Making

 The Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood  Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, announced a call for proposals for grants to conduct health impact assessments (HIA).

October 20, 2010

Landmark Studies on Transit, Energy and Nutrition Policies are Focus of New Grants

Four new health impact assessments will help policy makers assess the community health effects of their decisions.

June 8, 2010

RWJF and Pew Award Six Grants to Examine the Impact of Policy on People’s Health

The Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, today announced more than $1 million in grants to six projects that will conduct health impact assessments at the state and local levels.

March 1, 2010

California to Examine Health Impacts of Landmark Cap-and-Trade Program

The Health Impact Project today announced the award of a $150,000 grant to the Oakland-based Public Health Institute to collaborate with the California Department of Public Health on a health impact assessment of a proposed “cap-and-trade” regulation under California’s 2006 Global Warming Solutions Act.

January 11, 2010

Healthy Places Research Group Monthly Meeting

Aaron Wernham, director of Pew's Health Impact Project, will speak on national efforts to expand the use of Health Impact Assessments (HIAs) at the January meeting of the Healthy Places Research Group.

November 2, 2009

2009 American Public Health Association Annual Meeting

Aaron Wernham, director of the Health Impact Project, will give two presentations about health impact assessments at the upcoming American Public Health Association Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, PA, November 7–11, 2009.

October 30, 2009

Measuring Up to Health Reform

An article in the Faster Times on the Health Impact Project, a new collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts.

October 23, 2009

Meet the Project Director and Learn More about the Health Impact Project

A video interview with Dr. Aaron Wernham of the Health Impact Project.

October 20, 2009

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trusts Launch National Initiative to Advance Policies that Promote Health

The Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, is a national initiative that promotes the use of health impact assessments (HIAs), a tool to help policymakers factor health into their decisions.  Learn more about HIAs, the Health Impact Project, and the funding available to support HIAs.

More from the News Room

Events & Appearances

July 14, 2010

20-20 Public Health Vision: Prevention, Equity, Leadership

Memphis, TN

Aaron Wernham will serve as a co-presenter for a session entitled “HIA—Helping Health Agencies Reach Across Sectors to Solve Today's Public Health Challenges” at the National Association of County and City Health Officials’ (NACCHO) annual conference in Memphis, Tennessee.

November 2, 2009

2009 American Public Health Association Annual Meeting

Philadelphia, PA

Aaron Wernham, director of the Health Impact Project, will give two presentations about health impact assessments at the upcoming American Public Health Association Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, PA, November 7–11, 2009.

More Events & Appearances

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