Media Influence on Health Policy


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Media Influence on Health Policy

Many studies show media use linked to positive and negative health outcomes. For example, Florida’s current health education programs such as Zika Free Florida it is a positive health outcome. Because this education program explains about virus infection, transmission types, prevention, symptoms and care. This unreactive education teaches people that mosquitoes bites are the most common transmission type. Zika can be transmitted through sex, even if the infected person does not have symptoms at the time. A pregnant woman can pass Zika virus to her fetus, causing birth defects (HealthFlorida, 2019). Another example is “Tobacco Free Florida”. The mission if this website is working to protect the people of Florida from the dangers of tobacco and help quit tabaco (FloridaHealth, 2019). Nonetheless, research linking media use and negative outcomes for tobacco in TV like smoking and drinking is common. The media, also, focuses on prevention program which is about tobacco use and youth.

Framing, a key element of media advocacy, is focusing on health problems as problems of individual behavior rather than a lack of access to healthy environments. Media advocacy is the process by which people understand meaning from content of words, pictures, or interactions. Public health representative tries to focus media on health issues to effect social or public policy (Mason, 2016).

“Public policy and the health care delivery system influences the health and well-being

of society and professional nursing” (Silver Spring, 2010).


FloridaHealth. (2019, May). Tobacco Free Florida . Retrieved from

HealthFlorida. (2019, May 6). Zika Free Florida. Retrieved from

Mason, D. J. (2016). POLICY & POLITICS in Nursing and Health Care. St. Louis: 137-150.

Silver Spring. (2010). Social Policy Statement: The Essence of the Profession. ANA, 4.


Education program: Zika Free Florida

In 2016, Miami and its surrounding area were aimed by media channels as a “Zika zone.” Tourism officials called on visitors to take precautions, to keep the perspective in the awake of the first confirmed, locally acquired Zika cases in the U.S. The situation developed and proved to be more not just a noise on the radar. From the words of the University of Florida medical entomologist Jonathan Day, an individual case could potentially lead to a larger outbreak (Silk, 2016). It was confirmed by the officials that 15 people had acquired Zika within a one-square-mile portion of Wynwood.

The outbreak caused the Centers for Disease Control and Protection to issue an unprecedented domestic travel advisory. Especially, pregnant women were warned to stay out of the Zika zone. Couples were advised to wait eight (8) weeks before trying to get pregnant. Even the Public Health of England had issued a similar advisory about travelling to southern Florida area, Wynwood (Silk R., 2016). I believe that the media who highlighted the outbreak brought necessary awareness to the safety of visitors and residents of Florida.

Education initiative: Tobacco Free Florida

“If you want to change the world, start with yourself.” ― Mohandas Gandhi

I decided to bring up my favorite quote in order to address the topic of “Tobacco Free Florida.” In order to help the society to change its view on smoking habits, we have to start with ourselves, including the school that we are studying at and the health care organizations that we are working.

The American Cancer Society data states that tobacco is a single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the U. S. Cigarette smoking is blamed for approximately 30 % of all cancer deaths, killing up to half of its users.

I was able to find an interesting article “Colleges and Universities Secure Grants to Pursue 100% Tobacco-Free Campuses Across Florida” that explains that according to a media release, the support is part of a $1.2 million in grants from the CVS Health Foundation in partnership with the American Cancer Society and the Truth Initiative, to help 126 U.S. colleges and universities across the country to become 100 % tobacco-free. “With 99 percent of smokers starting before age 26, college campuses are critical in preventing young adults from starting tobacco use, aiding current smokers in quitting and reducing exposure to secondhand smoke for all” (“Colleges…Florida”).

As a country, we are still in a critical moment of our nation’s efforts to end the epidemic of smoking and chewing tobacco. Expanding the number of tobacco-free college and university campuses is an important step up to a tobacco-free generation in the U.S.

Based on the reading of the chapters from the textbook, media can be used as a health care tool by creating documentary films, interview based videos, blogging about current initiatives, twitting, and utilizing Facebook as an advertisement agents (Mason, Leavitt, Chaffee, 2016).


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