Mass media for public health messages

Stead M, Angus K, Langley T, Katikireddi SV, Hinds K, Hilton S, Lewis S, Thomas J, Campbell M, Young B, Bauld L
Record ID 32016000043
Authors' objectives: Media campaigns can reach large numbers of people at relatively low cost. They can be used to promote sales of products, but can also be used to give the public information about health. Studies over the years looking at mass media programmes on smoking, for example, have shown that they have an important role to play in encouraging people to change their behaviour. More recently, new media including social media has been used to communicate health messages and allow the public to interact with and influence material online that is relevant to health. However, important questions remain about the best use of mass media for public health. The proposed research will look at existing studies and consult with practitioners and the public in order to provide the NHS, local authorities, government and other organisations with evidence on the effective use of mass media to communicate public health messages. In this study mass media campaigns will be defined as use of mass media channels to influence health behaviours and the factors that influence them (for example, awareness, knowledge, attitudes, identification with the message, norms). We will review studies of media campaigns delivered at local, regional and national levels through the following: Broadcast media Print media Outdoor and ambient media Internet and mobile media Other media (e.g. video games) We will review media campaigns on health behaviours that represent the main preventable causes of disease in the UK and that are relevant to public health. We will not examine campaigns designed to increase uptake of NHS services but will instead focus on using the media to influence lifestyle behaviours. By this we mean alcohol use, illicit drug use, diet, physical activity, sexual and reproductive health, and smoking cessation and prevention.
Project Status: Completed
Year Published: 2019
English language abstract: An English language summary is available
Publication Type: Not Assigned
Country: England
MeSH Terms
  • Health Education
  • Health Promotion
  • Mass Media
  • Public Health
  • Social Media
  • Health Communication
  • Internet
Organisation Name: NIHR Public Health Research programme
Contact Address: NIHR Journals Library, National Institute for Health Research, Evaluation, Trials and Studies Coordinating Centre, Alpha House, University of Southampton Science Park, Southampton SO16 7NS, UK
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Copyright: Queen's Printer and Controller of HMSO
This is a bibliographic record of a published health technology assessment from a member of INAHTA or other HTA producer. No evaluation of the quality of this assessment has been made for the HTA database.