This week marks the Sixth National Conference on Health Communication, Marketing and Media in Atlanta, Georgia. Each August, health communicators, educators, social marketers, media specialists, and other public health professionals discuss the state of the science in communicating about health.
Once again, the conference includes a 3.5 hour workshop on health literacy as part of a social marketing strategy. Health literacy and social marketing approaches put the end user or “customer” at the center of exchange and focus on creating useable products and services.
Although social marketers will tell you information is not a product, information is a critical component of how people make decisions that can affect their use of products and services. When we design information that reduces the demand to understand information about symptoms, for example, we can positively affect people’s use of medicines and visits to healthcare providers.
In addition to the workshop, a breakout session includes four presentations on health literacy. One previews a new tool for CDC staff to evaluate health messages and materials. Another reports findings of a content analysis and consumer interviews on public messages about H1N1 pandemic influenza. A third presentation describes changes to CDC’s immunization campaigns based on parents’ feedback. The fourth presentation describes how a manual for health professionals was revised using plain language.
For the first time, parts of the conference will be streamed live. You can watch the plenary sessions and a limited number of special and breakout sessions. To register, visit https://cdc.6connex.com/portal/2012NCHCMM/login