Each day you are exposed to many different forms of health communication. Health communications and the health information within may come in the form of factsheets, brochures, or websites. To be an effective health communication tool, it is important that the information in such materials is correct and presented in an appropriate form that addresses issues related to health literacy, culture, and age. Health communications, regardless of what form they take, should also be visually appealing.
In constructing effective health messages, certain criteria should be incorporated when developing various forms of health communication. Consider for example that in most community settings, all written health information should be provided in fonts that are easy to read and are written at a fifth-grade level.
As a health educator, you may need to develop different types of health messages that incorporate considerations for effective health communication. These criteria include:
- Accuracy: The content is valid and without errors.
- Availability: The content is delivered or placed where the target population can access it readily.
- Cultural Competence: The information is inclusive of various ethnic, racial, linguistic, and educational levels and disability considerations.
- Evidence Base: The information is based on a comprehensive review of the scientific literature and best practices.
- Reach: The content is in a form that is available to the largest possible number of people in the target population.
- Reliability: The source of the content is credible and the content itself is kept up to date.
- Repetition: The delivery of and access to the content is continually repeated over time.
- Timeliness: The content is available when the audience is most receptive to, or in need of, the specific information.
For this Discussion, review the Get Smart Brochures website provided in this week’s resources. Reflect on the types of health communication campaigns that these brochures represent. Then, identify an example of a text-based health communication campaign. (Look at non-web-based resources such as fact sheets, pamphlets, or brochures.) You may visit the nearest drugstore, health clinic or doctor’s office to acquire such an example. Scan or take a picture of the health communication campaign and attach it to your Discussion. If you cannot scan or take a picture of this health communication campaign, you will need to describe it in detail in your Discussion post.
Post a brief description of the health communication campaign that you selected, including a copy of the scan or picture, if available. Explain how effective your selected health communication campaign is for the target population and why. Be sure to include an explanation of how health literacy may have informed the health communication campaign for this target population. Then, explain two positive and two negative attributes of your selected health communication campaign. Be specific and provide examples.