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ORAU Helps CDC Develop and Launch Online Platform, HealthCommWorks

In conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ORAU recently launched a new online platform of health communication tools called HealthCommWorks. Developed for the CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, HealthCommWorks is designed to help health communication professionals develop and disseminate effective messages.

CDC HealthCommWorks logo

When the CDC teamed up with ORAU, they envisioned a workspace characterized by research-based guidance and collaboration across the global health communication community. This vision became a reality when the first module, named MessageWorks was unveiled in August 2012 at the CDC’s National Conference on Health Communication, Marketing and Media.

MessageWorks helps users craft new messages, assess existing messages and match messages to the most appropriate audience segments. Unlike more subjective approaches, MessageWorks is based on an empirical model developed by professors Punam Anand Keller and Donald Lehman of Dartmouth and recommends tactics that research indicates aid in effective communication. MessageWorks also allows users to share virtual workspaces to gain peer insights. In addition to making recommendations for improvements, MessageWorks gives the health communicator bullet points that can be used to defend decisions made about a message.

CDC SocialWorks logoCDC MessageWorks logo

In addition to MessageWorks, the new SocialWorks tool that assists communicators with integrating social media strategies in their planning, was recently launched. A third tool known as ProofWorks is scheduled for release in spring 2013 and will provide guidance in establishing short- and long-term evaluation plans.

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