Honors Writing about Health and Medicine

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Additional Sample Health Campaigns



I wanted to link you to two additional health campaigns that include tools and strategies from which we might draw.


The first is the CDC’s “Get Smart” campaign, aimed at helping patients and consumers avoid turning to antibiotics for treating viral infections. Take a look, in particular, at the sample print materials, especially the different types of one-page sheets, and the online materials. Also, try to note the differences between texts designed for patients/consumers and those designed for outpatient healthcare providers. Which text examples impressed you the most? Which seem to have the most potential for your project?


The second campaign (or rather set of campaigns) I want to link to you is the CDC’s “Vital Signs.” To get an idea of how social media might be coordinated in this campaign, take a look at pp. 40-45 of the CDC’s Social Media Toolkit, which you can download here.





  1. sarahmhudak says:

    The print materials that the CDC uses such as brochures, posters, and one-page informational sheets, would be good for engaging an audience because they are tangible. While there is the possibility that patients will shove these items into a purse or pocket and forget about, physically touching the material has been shown to create a lasting memory for that information if read. The information presented in the print materials is simple and succint enough that a patient would take the time to read them. The use of color and visuals also draws a reader in. I, personally, like the one-page sheets because they summarize the information presented in the posters, but they can be taken home and hung up on the refrigerator or a bulletin board. Using posters and informational sheets would be best for reaching out to medical students.

    The online materials consist of podcasts and videos. I think that, for medical students, using videos would be more effective because they have something to engage in using their vision and their hearing. This will double the likliehood that they’ll attend to the information and remember it.

    The difference in the materials for patients and providers lies in the type of information presented. Patients are provided information about treatments, their need for them, etc. and providers are given information about when and who to give the treatments.

    The Vital Signs campaign uses various aspects of social media to engage all types of readers. The toolkit they provide goes into detail about what exactly social media is and what audiences use it. The most important take-away point is the ability of the readers to interact with the materials and share with others through discussions, etc. The writing itself must be framed in a way that presents the information as new and exciting, and worth remembering and sharing. Since my group and I will be working with the medical students’ audience, a group which already takes an active role in social media, this will be a key component to getting information across to them.

  2. ryanmarracino says:

    I think all of the campaign materials do a good job of conveying a consistent, clear message about the campaign. Many of the materials are repetitive, and this is good because people looking at these materials aren’t going to sit down and read everything, but rather quickly read through a brochure the doctor handed them, or glance at a poster on the wall in the waiting room. The ones that have the most potential for my project dealing with the Pegasus health doctors would be the practice tips for physicians. These types of tips reassure doctors of what they should be doing, and this also allows doctors to create good relationships with their staffs by creating common goals in educating their patients about good health practices.

  3. kprashad says:

    The CDC uses different links to materials that include posters, videos, and brochures. They have different pages that have information for anyone looking for something specific. They are presented in a simple way so that a common audience is able to understand them properly. The colors of the text contrast with the background very well and are easy to read. The pages are organized real well but could be improved on.
    The CDC’s knowing about the antibiotics would useful in informing those 40 to 60 years of age about different medicines that can help them. Since most people between that age are taking prescription medication at that age, it is good that they know more about it. The pages that explain how antibiotic overdose is bad that code be useful for anyone. There are also videos that can help explain different diseases and the methods for curing them. This could be useful for anyone as well and there are videos for parents; people 40-60 are usually parents.

  4. kgardner1130 says:

    The CDC uses 3 different types of print materials, the posters, brochures, and one page sheets. Each of this would be useful in the campaign for the Physicians. Posters could be displayed in patient rooms which some patients may glance at when they are waiting to be seen by the doctor. I think the one-page sheets would best be used to facilitate conversation between the physician and the patient. The brochures could be placed in the waiting area or given to patients as they are leaving to take home and learn more. The online material may be less useful for the Physician group in their practice. However, they could be used as a education tool so the physicians are knowledgeable. The page designed for healthcare providers would be useful for educating and reeducating physicians on best practices for certain treatments and tests.

    Incorporating social media may be more tricky for the physician group in relation to the other groups. I am not sure that Facebook would be the most efficient way to promote the campaigns efforts because it may not have the professionalism associated with it that most physicians would expect to take it seriously. Because of this, I think a blog or email newsletter would be more effective in spreading the word of the campaign.

  5. erahmes says:

    The print material that impressed me the most was the posters. I liked how they had a poster aimed at every “group” (Caucasian, African American, Spanish, children and adults). To me this is effective, because depending on where the poster will go and the main audience it will have there are different posters to use. This will help the audience feel more connected to the poster. I think the one-page sheets would have potential for 40-60 year olds because a lot of them are geared toward parents who should be looking out for their children. The brochures and on-page sheets also had the target audience listed which was a nice tool for distributers.

  6. apectol91 says:

    I think that poster print materials are the most effective way at conveying a message about the campaign and getting people’s attention. People aren’t always as likely to pick up a magazine or brochure that is laying on a side table and pay attention to what it has to say, but if there is a bright, bold, colorful poster with brief information on it, that will more than likely grab the readers attention and intrigue them to take the information into consideration. This is not to say that magazine articles or brochures are not effective because I do believe they can be. Creating a poster, brochure or magazine page with physician tips would be extremely effective for our target audience of health care providers in the community, as this directly applies to them. Featuring this information in some type of medical journal or newsletter from the AMA for example, would easily reach the target audience. Perhaps creating a side by side poster of “questions to ask your patient” and “questions to ask your physician” would be helpful in an exam room to facilitate a thorough examination and make sure all bases are covered between the patient and physician.

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