Using mass media to communicate with patients - strengths and limitations



Mass media plays a high-value role in healthcare development fields. Human beings face many health issues every day, as well as the digital transformation has changed dramatically in health knowledge across the world. Hence, the related healthcare information requires update very quickly, even every hour to the minute. Therefore, mass media proves its essential impact on a large population, presenting health issues and solutions.


Mass media refers to an array of media techniques targeting broad audiences via mass communication, including television, radio, Internet sites, newspapers, and magazines.


With the current emphasis on patient choices, mass media show health issues to patients in general, communicating and raising awareness to shape the public's perceptions and decisions about healthcare. Not all types of mass media means are equal. Whereas the written media show its potential to convey data to patients, visual and audio media are not the perfect choice for this purpose - although they seem to be suited for educational and promotional efforts. Some sponsors are concerned that patients nowadays need to access the information news with the data on it to make decisions towards their healthcare treatment.


Strengths of Mass Media

  • Wide reach: Its definition proves this key advantage since mass media can reach a high volume of viewers, even worldwide, notwithstanding what your customers' demographics is.

  • Potential for better communication: Mass media can turn patients' negative thoughts which is resulted from the lack of understanding, into positive ones, by raising awareness and solutions of health issues. The health behavior of common people can change since they are more likely to rely on the quality data reached out to a large population via mass media.

  • Active Control: Instead of trying to get press coverage, you can actively purchase for an insert or ad space to avoid your key message tailor by a third party. If you want to deliver quality information with well-edited information, mass media would be the best approach for your firm.

Limitations of Mass Media

  • Breadth but not depth enough: Mass media are generally not explicitly targeted effectively based on the potential market. However, some newspapers or television stations, especially foreign providers, have the power to focus on geographical zones and the needs of a specific population.

  • Cost: Mass media will take you a significant expenditure for purchasing a space, for example, on the television station.

  • Negative scenes or messages: Some studies have found that mass media may portray negative scenes about health consequences that affect the audience's behavior. We can take the example of the scenes of tobacco, smoking, consumption in the advertisements and movies, which depict an adverse behavior on the audiences. According to past psychological studies, this drawback can lead to a change in the behavior and addiction to such harmful substances since the audience is more inclined to the negative advertisements. Mass media can change psychological behavior and lead to aggression, eating disorders, and ways to reduce the negative impact on children and adults.

Reference:

https://www.ahrq.gov/

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