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Public Relations and Health Journalism

  • By: S. Catherine Foster
  • In: Encyclopedia of Health Communication
  • Edited by: Teresa L. Thompson
  • Subject:Public Health Education & Health Promotion, Health Psychology, Health Communication

Public relations (PR) is a communication field that traditionally centers on delivering messages to key audiences. The messages can be informational or persuasive, or a combination of the two, and organizations use PR to communicate with constituents. Businesses, entertainers, politicians, and others use PR to generate publicity, increase brand recognition, garner votes, develop relationships, and engage in dialogue with audiences. In the area of health communication, PR is a field that studies and uses communication strategies, methods, programs, and interventions as a means to inform and influence individual and community decisions that enhance health.

Health journalism is a specialized form of journalism that centers on health-related news. Newspapers, magazines, broadcast outlets, and social media often have a journalist on staff whose expertise is health issues. ...

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