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A Health Communication Studio for the 21st Century

Gary Black, BA, Health Communication, Mecklenburg County Health Department, 249 Billingsley Rd., Charlotte, NC 28211, 704-336-3354, blackga@co.mecklenburg.nc.us and Jonathan Levin, MPH, Health Promotion, Mecklenburg County Health Department, 249 Billingsley Rd., Charlotte, NC 28211.

Local health departments must utilize 21st century communication technologies and strategies as population-based tools for improving health. The Mecklenburg County Health Department (Charlotte, NC) has a decade of experience in design and implementation of health communication initiatives. Just as important as the use of emerging technologies is successful collaboration with community partners. Our programs include desktop publishing, in-house video production, three television shows, two web sites, strategic use of media relations and state of the art distance learning installations. Our partners include cable franchise holders, the local public television outlet, WTVI, (PBS), University of North Carolina at Charlotte faculty in both the Health Behavior and Communication departments, and media professionals from public schools, and City and County Public Service and Information offices. This presentation will demonstrate methods of building community partnerships and high-tech strategies to inform and empower communities. A comprehensive health communication campaign developed for the local REACH 2010 effort will be highlighted. The benefits and challenges of project development utilizing key informant interviews and focus groups drawn from intended audiences will be examined. Examples of television/video/DVD media and web-based products will be presented.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Health Communications, Community Education

Related Web page: www.meckhealth.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.

Innovations in Teaching, Researching, and Applying Health Communication

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