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  1. 1

    The role of the media in HIV / AIDS prevention.

    Foreman M

    [Unpublished] 1955. Presented at the Third USAID HIV / AIDS Prevention Conference, Washington, D.C., August 7-9, 1995. 5 p.

    Since the beginning of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the mass media have influenced the public's response. The initial and sometimes continuing response of the public to the media's reporting was negative. In many countries, HIV/AIDS reporting tends to be misleading, misinformed, or nonexistent. In Zimbabwe and Costa Rica, the mass media often report HIV/AIDS to be a foreign disease or limited to marginalized groups. In Malawi, the media misreported the president to say that 10% of citizens had AIDS while he really said that 10% had HIV infection. Rapidly assimilated misconceptions make it difficult to educate the population. Flyers on HIV/AIDS distributed by a nongovernmental organization (NGO) may reach only 5000 people. This has a limited effect when compared to a radio station (10 million people) or a newspaper (100,000). The mass media have the power to raise public awareness and influence policy makers to respond to HIV/AIDS. In the US and elsewhere, the gay media informed homosexuals about HIV/AIDS and the need to use condoms. Many NGOs and governments have encouraged the media to report an HIV/AIDS-related event. Journalists need information about AIDS in forms that they can use and understand. The media can inform the public about HIV/AIDS through advertising, editorials, features, news items, education, and entertainment. The Panos Institute works in almost 20 developing countries to improve media understanding of HIV/AIDS and coverage. It works with partner organizations in the target country in setting up workshops and seminars to sensitize and inform journalists, editors, and sub-editors about HIV/AIDS. At least one HIV-infected person addresses each workshop. After the workshop, the participants continue to receive documentation designed for the media and a monthly feature service on AIDS. All participants become aware of their potential role in communicating information about HIV/AIDS.
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  2. 2

    Is health education effective?

    McKenzie A; Ngobeni O; Bonongo F

    NURSING RSA. 1992 Jul; 7(7):26-7.

    Primary health care (PHC) workers from 20 hospitals, PHC nurses, community health care nurses, and other PHC workers attended a session on health education and effectiveness in South Africa in September 1991. Discussion is directed to an overview of health education as presented in the day's session, the effectiveness of health education, and recommendations for improving health education. The first session on health education aimed to explore the breadth of possibilities for health education, and to emphasize some important problems, such as inconsistency in messages. Role plays were enacted within different groups: the 1991 Tintswalo PHC nurses class, the Tintswalo People's Awareness of Disability Issues group, and the Nkhensani PHC nurses group. The second session involved a panel discussion with 4 speakers. The first speaker directed attention to the need for an adequate education as insurance for effective health education. Modern trends have been responsible for the destruction of black culture. There is a problem of victim blaming, when in fact the problem of rural mortality is the system. Socioeconomic conditions and politics must be changed before health education can be effective. Health personnel as representatives of the middle class may be viewed as part of the problem. The second speaker spoke of the ineffectiveness of teaching someone what ought to be eaten but not providing the means to acquire the food. Oppression has led to blaming the oppressed. The third speaker noted that health workers were indeed part of the problem, e.g., health workers do not practice the advice given out and many times are junior personnel who are not evaluated. There are requirements for tracking what nurses do, but little on evaluation of appropriate messages. Appearance replaces substance. The fourth speaker felt health education is about training people and satisfying the educator and the system. Politics and health were related and too much time was misdirected to fighting with the community. Situation analysis was recommended before action was taken. Recommendations involved, for instance, building rapport with the community, and the need for a greater grasp of health knowledge by health educators.
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