132 Annual Meeting Logo - Go to APHA Meeting Page  
APHA Logo - Go to APHA Home Page

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Development of "BODYLOVE": An example of Entertainment-Education (E-E) to reduce health disparities among African Americans

Connie L. Kohler, DrPH1, Yoko Kawamura, MPH2, Jessica Muilenberg, MPH3, Lee Eric Shackleford, MFA4, Heather Coley3, and Max Michael, MD5. (1) Department of Health Behavior, University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health, RPHB 227, 1530 3rd Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35294-0022, 205-975-8071, ckohler@uab.edu, (2) Department of Health Behavior, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1530 3rd Avenue South RPHB 227, Birmingham, AL 35294-0022, (3) Department of Health Behavior School of Public Health, University of Alabama at Birmingham, RPHB 227, 1530 3rd Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35294-0022, (4) Department of Theatre, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 1530 3rd Avenue Bell 109-A, Birmingham, AL 35294, (5) Dean's office, University of Alabama at Birmingham, School of Public Health, 1530 3rd Avenue RPHB140, Birmingham, AL 35294-0022

“BODYLOVE” is a radio soap opera program designed to educate listeners about various health issues, including hypertension, diabetes, stroke, overweight, and high-fat-low-fiber diet. The stories are centered on four African American families and a beauty salon, named BODYLOVE. The target population is middle-aged African Americans.

The program is firmly grounded in Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory. The story provides listeners with positive, negative and transitional role models to demonstrate what behaviors can make them healthier and how to make changes in their lifestyles. Para-social interaction is an important response to E-E programs, involving audiences’ cognitive and affective involvement with the stories. Those effects may lead to more effective learning experiences for audiences. E-E programs can also increase collective-efficacy, causing social change. The BODYLOVE program aims to create such effects to reduce health disparities seen in Alabama.

The specific focus of BODYLOVE is based on the characteristics of the listening audience for the program’s original host radio station. Like much of the African American population in the Deep South, they are at high risks for diabetes, hypertension and cardiovascular diseases. We conducted formative evaluation focus groups. Most of the participants expressed favorable reactions to the program, while some gave negative feedback on the very early episodes. That feedback has been incorporated to make the episodes more culturally sensitive. The first 20 episodes have been successfully broadcast at a historic black-owned AM station in Birmingham. We are currently looking for opportunities to become a statewide program.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, participants will be able to

Keywords: Health Communications, Health Education

Related Web page: www.bodylove.org

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.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Health Communication Research with Minority Populations

The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA