243517 Proposed and Final Cigarette Package Health Warnings: Comprehensive Media Coverage Analysis

Monday, October 31, 2011

Kara Henschel , U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Rockville
On November 10, 2010, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a proposed rule, Required Warnings for Cigarette Packages and Advertisements, proposing to modify the required warnings that appear on cigarette packages and in cigarette advertisements. Included in the proposed rule were 36 proposed images that convey the negative health consequences of smoking. On or before June 22, 2011, FDA intends to issue and announce a final rule that will include a set of nine required graphic health warnings (from the 36) that will be required to appear on cigarette packages and in cigarette advertisements.

A comprehensive analysis of traditional media coverage surrounding the proposed rule revealed that the announcement generated a significant volume of media coverage (i.e., over 132,860,155 impressions) from broadcast TV, radio and print outlets across top-tier national and local markets. An overwhelming majority of media outlets published a variety of the proposed images and accompanying nine textual warning statements that were designed to communicate the negative health consequences of smoking. National media coverage of the proposed images, textual warning statements, and related third-party commentary from leading tobacco control advocates provided a valuable opportunity to educate the American public about the health risks of cigarettes.

Results from the analysis of traditional media coverage surrounding the proposed rule demonstrate effective use of a regulatory announcement to promote public health through mass media. Additionally, results from the analysis and lessons learned from media interactions were used to inform, refine and design future public and media relations efforts.

Learning Areas:
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Analyze and describe traditional media (e.g., broadcast TV, radio, and print) coverage surrounding FDAís proposed cigarette product warning labels Evaluate and describe media interest and the publicís perceptions of modifications to the required warnings that appear on cigarette packages and in cigarette advertisements Demonstrate effective use of a regulatory announcement to promote public health through mass media and the types of data used to inform future mass media efforts

Keywords: Tobacco Control, Media

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I was instrumental in this initiative and have agreement from my colleagues.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.