The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

5145.0: Wednesday, November 13, 2002 - 3:42 PM

Abstract #42153

Tobacco arguments website: An experiment using informatics and public health advocacy

Martha C Michel, MS, Graduate Group in Biological and Medical Informatics, University of California, San Francisco, P.O. Box 0613, 3333 California St. - Laurel Heights, San Francisco, CA 94143, 415-502-8183, and Lisa A. Bero, PhD, Institute for Health Policy Studies and Department of Clinical Pharmacy, University of California, San Francisco, 3333 California Street, Suite 420, Box 0613, San Francisco, CA 94143.

One of the strategies the tobacco industry used in response to the threat of indoor air regulations in Washington was to mobilize businesses and industry to write letters to defeat the regulation. The public health response was minimal in support of the regulation. In order to help legislators, regulators, and the public health community respond more efficiently to future regulations, we have produced a website that will list the common arguments tobacco companies use to counter regulations and we will also provide counter arguments in support of regulations. In this session, we will demonstrate the use of the website in an interactive session. We will search for arguments and the literature supporting the arguments. The web site uses automatic classification methods to create a “map” of the different arguments. Another feature of the website is to allow public health professionals and regulators to add and discuss arguments. It also has form letters that can be sent to appropriate legislators and regulators. This website is an important resource since the tobacco industry has had an organized response to regulations but the public health community does not. It will provide an opportunity for public health professionals to mobilize an organized response to counter the tobacco industry’s sophisticated and systematic efforts to delay or stop regulatory proceedings by using technological advancement.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) in this session will be able to

Keywords: Tobacco Policy, Public Health Informatics

Related Web page:

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Internet: Threat or Promise for Tobacco Control

The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA