Health Behavior - Chapter 6
Terms in this set (15)
• Communication is the production and exchange of information by use of signs and symbols.
• The processes involved include encoding, transmission, reception (decoding), and synthesis of information and meaning (Gerbner).
• Political theorist Harold Laswell argued that key components of communication include the sender, the message, and the receiver.
COMMUNICATION THEORY: OTHER FACTORS
•Context of the communication (e.g., formal, informal)
•Relationship between sender and receiver
•The meaning attached to the channel (e.g., Wall Street Journal vs. gossip)
•The process of encoding and decoding itself
COMMUNICATION AS A CODE: WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
•When you as a speaker send a message to another person or a group of people, what do you do? Do you simply utter a string of information?
•NO...you put the information into a CODE that will make sense to the intended recipient.
• advertisers are experts at encoding information.
• The MEDIUM through which you transmit the information: newspapers, TV, video, internet, interpersonal communication, rallies, etc.
• Channels can also be more specific, like Hispanic newspapers, or college radio, or through churches, etc.
• The use of media and communications in public health aims to provide information, influence behavior change, and impact the AGENDA of what people are concerned about, in order to set the stage for action.
Communication Theory: THINGS TO THINK ABOUT/ CRITIQUES
•It is sometimes complicated and difficult to assess the impact of a communications effort. Why? Because there are many levels of possible impact:
-Simple exposure - how many of the intended
audience were exposed to the message?
-How many of those exposed will make the behavior change?
•Technology, technology, technology! The nature of communication and the media of communication are changing rapidly due to mobile devices.
COMMUNITY AND ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGE
In many situations, change in the health behavior of individuals first requires change in the community itself, in norms, laws, physical conditions, systems, or organizations relevant to the situation.
• Communities, organizations and systems can either support or inhibit health behavior change.
• For example, you cannot expect people to engage in HIV preventive behavior if the community exerts strong pressures on individuals NOT to discuss or even admit to any risk for the disease.
•Community mobilization efforts involve collective action by groups and community members to increase awareness about the problem, advocate for policy change, and engage in other activities to address the ecology of a health problem.
•Empowerment means that the community takes charge of the issue, defines what the goals are, and takes the necessary action.
COMMUNITY MOBILIZATION CONT.
•KEY issues in mobilizing communities:
-Defining the community
-Assessing and working with the community's capacity for mobilizing
-Understanding the community agenda and selecting the right issue
ORGANIZATIONAL AND SYSTEMS CHANGE
•Organizational development (OD) is both a philosophy and an approach to organizational change that view organizations as systems of human beings.
• improves the capability of organizations and systems to respond to health issues through a change process that focuses on several steps (see next slide)
ORGANIZATIONAL AND SYSTEMS CHANGE CONT.
•Assessing and improving group dynamics within the organization/system (the way people work together) •Encouraging shared goals and missions •Identifying organizational impediments to change, and "unfreezing" the organization or system to make changes •Involving the organization or system in identifying and implementing new policies and practices
CRITIQUES OF COMMUNITY AND ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGE THEORIES
•Mobilizing a community, or changing an organization, is a complex process.
•There are typically no "off the shelf" solutions for which evidence is clear.
•Change can be affected by factors outside of an intervention.
•For health promotion efforts, community mobilization or organizational change efforts are often best be directed towards more contextual factors related to the problem, such as policies and regulations, or increasing access to care - though they can be effective with respect to changing attitudes/awareness.
POLITICAL ECONOMY AND HEALTH
•Think about health problems as products of a larger set of social relationships, particularly relationships of socioeconomic structure, class, ethnicity, and gender.
•A health problem (and co-occurring health problems) can be seen as part of a trajectory of risk or trajectory of exposure shaped by the larger social relationships in which it exists.
•Under this approach, solutions must address the social relationships (e.g., economic patterns, relationships of ethnicity, etc.) that contribute to the problem.
•Example: Why has HIV/AIDS in the U.S. had a such a disproportionate effect on poor, minority, urban communities? How does that setting impact the problem?
ANTHROPOLOGY AND CULTURAL THEORY
•Biological anthropology focuses on health behavior as a species adaptation to (or interaction with) an environment.
•Cultural anthropology understands and explains health behavior as part of a pattern of living that integrates action with meaning, symbols, and values, as these are connected to a larger social structure. In other words, behavior cannot be separated from its larger context.
•Example: Use of health care services (a behavior) in an urban immigrant community may be an outcome of integrated factors:
-language barriers, -economic resources (to pay for care), -beliefs about the nature, cause, and
treatment of illness (culture), -social hierarchies in the community, etc
•Identifying the elements of cultural knowledge and practice systems (ethnomedical systems) related to health that might be shaping health behavior.
•Collaborating with key individuals or groups representing these cultural practices in order to identify and implement health promotion approaches that fit the population.
•Identifying channels of communication and dissemination that are relevant to a particular population or group, and working through those channels to provide information.
•Identifying barriers to health care/prevention access that are important for a particular population or group, and working collaboratively to resolve those barriers.
CRITIQUES OF ANTHROPOLOGICAL APPROACHES
•A common misperception about developing culturally tailored health promotion approaches is that culture is necessarily homogenous; that is, one approach is thought to fit an entire group of people. That can lead to misdirected and inefficient approaches.
•Changes in the way culture and behavior interact may take time.