Review: Empowering communication in emergency contexts: Reflections from the Italian coronavirus outbreak

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Review: Empowering communication in emergency contexts: Reflections from the Italian coronavirus outbreak

Review: Empowering communication in emergency contexts: Reflections from the Italian coronavirus outbreak

This commentary argues that an informed and empowered public is more likely to engage in recommended preventive behaviors and offers suggestions for empowering community members.

Population-empowering communication is necessary during the COVID-19 pandemic. Public health officials must tailor their communication using preferred channels of the target audiences. By filling communication gaps, trust in government and public health officials can be established. This can be positively affected by providing clear and transparent information to encourage self-efficacy for managing risk. Because individuals are becoming more anxious with the number of COVID-19 deaths, positive framing of messages can reduce anxiety and adverse behavioral responses. Finally, information must include clear actionable recommendations to be empowering.

|2020-05-21T08:25:05-04:00May 20th, 2020|COVID-19 Literature|0 Comments

About the Author: Maria Brann

Maria Brann
Dr. Maria Brann, PhD, MPH, is a professor in the Department of Communication Studies in the School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and affiliate faculty with the Injury Control Research Center at West Virginia University. She explores the integration of health, interpersonal, and gender communication. Her translational focus and mixed methods approach are woven throughout her health vulnerabilities research, which advocates for more effective communication to improve people’s health and safety. Her primary research interests focus on the study of women’s and ethical issues in health communication contexts and promotion of healthy lifestyle behaviors to improve personal and public health and safety. She researches communication at both the micro and macro levels and studies how communication influences relationships among individuals and with the social world.

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