Research has shown that information given to patients and materials designed to influence health behaviour often fail to achieve their aims. As a result, health professionals need proven strategies to ensure that information is selected, designed and presented appropriately for the target audience. In response, Writing for Health Communication provides a practical guide to designing health information, using evidence-based strategies to engage, inform and persuade different audiences.
The book outlines the steps a writer needs to go through in creating successful materials. Starting with an understanding of how people read and process information and how behaviour is influenced, the book then covers the practicalities of
Choosing an approach; Message framing; Text design and layout; Using graphics; Computer tailoring
Each chapter is illustrated with examples - including both good and bad practice and covering a range of health topics. For students and professionals in healthcare, health promotion, health education and public health, Writing for Health Communication is an invaluable guide to best practice.
Chapter 4: Making Written Materials Easy to Use
Making Written Materials Easy to Use
Following the previous chapter on how design can aid message comprehension, this chapter will consider the usability of health promotion texts. In the current information-dense society, people have become ‘scanners’ instead of ‘readers’ of texts. In practice, health promotion materials are rarely read from start to finish. Instead, people skim through the contents and read whatever catches their interest. And if you are lucky, they will value the contents and keep your brochure or look at your website again. Thus, the ability to attract and focus your readers’ attention and help them find specific information within your health promotion text becomes more and more important. This is especially true for extensive public health promotion ...