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 6: Developing Evidence-Based Content for Health Promotion Materials
Developing Evidence-Based Content for Health Promotion Materials
In Chapter 4 we explored how the structure of a leaflet, brochure or website directs the way in which readers process information and messages. We noted that it is important to anticipate top-down processes and to structure bottom-up processes. We discussed a series of structural characteristics which help readers use health promotion text efficiently and facilitate intended processing of messages. In this chapter we will consider ‘effectiveness’ in a different sense. Rather than using design features to enhance processing effectiveness (as discussed in Chapter 4), we will consider the effectiveness of message content in prompting changes in beliefs, attitudes and behaviour. Processing effectiveness facilitates the impact that message content has on individual ...