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Use of Media in Promoting Policy Change

Use of Media in Promoting Policy Change

The media strategies shape public opinion, perception, and views on a health situation, health policy, or disease. Media platforms are great sources of health education (Stellefson et al., 2020). Media campaigns have been noted to influence health behaviors at an individual level (Schwartz & Woloshin, 2019). For instance, research by Fleary et al. (2018) noted that media campaigns improved health literacy among adolescents and influenced their health behaviors with an impact on public health. Online media platforms influence mothers’ attitudes toward the vaccination of their children, therefore making it a great tool to promote vaccination and clear misinformation on vaccines (Melovic et al., 2020). Another instance of the use of media to promote health agendas and influence health behaviors has been evidenced during the COVID-19 pandemic (Arora & Grey, 2020). Online media was used to promote the adoption of recommended health behaviors, such as social distancing, to manage the spread of COVID-19 infections (Bonell et al., 2020). Social media also plays a critical role in promoting physical activity (Hayes, 2020).

However, media campaigns can be negatively used in healthcare promotion, negatively impacting public health. Notably, media campaigns have promoted and generated negative views on certain health policies. For instance, the use of Twitter against Obamacare provided the polarizing effects of media campaigns on the creation of negative sentiments on policies (Mendez et al., 2018). Media campaigns can be a source of health misinformation which can lead to a failure in efforts to promote health initiatives and policies (Schillinger et al., 2020). Misinformation remains a great challenge in public promotion (Southwell et al., 2019). For instance, misinformation and disinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic led to fear, panic, and noncompliance, leading to increased infections (Melki et al., 2020).


Arora, T., & Grey, I. (2020). Health behavior changes during COVID-19 and the potential consequences: A mini-review. Journal of Health Psychology, 25(9), 1155–1163.

Bonell, C., Michie, S., Reicher, S., West, R., Bear, L., Yardley, L., Curtis, V., Amlôt, R., & Rubin, G. J. (2020). Harnessing behavioral science in public health campaigns to maintain ‘social distancing’ in response to the COVID-19 pandemic: key principles. J Epidemiol Community Health, 74(8), 617–619.

Fleary, S. A., Joseph, P., & Pappagianopoulos, J. E. (2018). Adolescent health literacy and health behaviors: A systematic review. Journal of Adolescence, 62, 116–127.

Hayes, M. (2020). Social media and inspiring physical activity during COVID-19 and beyond. Https://Doi.Org/10.1080/23750472.2020.1794939, 1–8.

Melki, J., Tamim, H., Hadid, D., Farhat, S., Makki, M., Ghandour, L., & Hitti, E. (2020). Media Exposure and Health Behavior during Pandemics: The Mediating Effect of Perceived Knowledge and Fear on Compliance with COVID-19 Prevention Measures. Https://Doi.Org/10.1080/10410236.2020.1858564, 37(5), 586–596.

Melovic, B., Stojanovic, A. J., Vulic, T. B., Dudic, B., & Benova, E. (2020). The Impact of Online Media on Parents’ Attitudes toward Vaccination of Children—Social Marketing and Public Health. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 2020, Vol. 17, Page 5816, 17(16), 5816.

Mendez, G. R., Cosby, A. G., & Mohanty, S. D. (2018). Obamacare On Twitter: Online Political Participation and Its Effects On Polarisation1. Teorija in Praksa, 55(2), 419-444.

Schillinger, D., Chittamuru, D., & Susana Ramírez, A. (2020). From “infodemics” to health promotion: A novel framework for the role of social media in public health. American Journal of Public Health, 110(9), 1393–1396.

Schwartz, L. M., & Woloshin, S. (2019). Medical Marketing in the United States, 1997-2016. JAMA, 321(1), 80–96.

Southwell, B. G., Niederdeppe, J., Cappella, J. N., Gaysynsky, A., Kelley, D. E., Oh, A., Peterson, E. B., & Chou, W. Y. S. (2019). Misinformation as a Misunderstood Challenge to Public Health. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 57(2), 282–285.

Stellefson, M., Paige, S. R., Chaney, B. H., & Chaney, J. D. (2020). Evolving Role of Social Media in Health Promotion: Updated Responsibilities for Health Education Specialists. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 2020, Vol. 17, Page 1153, 17(4), 1153.


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Critique an example of a professional organization’s use of media to promote a health policy agenda.

Use of Media in Promoting Policy Change

Use of Media in Promoting Policy Change

Discuss attributes of success or lack thereof.

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