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Health Communication & Marketing

At the heart of almost every health communication campaign is research that helps communities better understand how to encourage their residents to invest in their family's health and wellness. In partnerships with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Library of Medicine, and communities around the world, ORAU's health communication researchers seek to improve health communication by developing, pilot testing, implementing, and evaluating innovative communication and social marketing campaigns using the latest technologies.

Linking with ORAU experts and researchers within our university consortium, opportunities exist for research collaborations that can determine how to best inform the public and equip health professionals with knowledge of emerging public health challenges. These partnerships foster opportunities for research collaborations in community health settings that support important research needs across academia, industry, and government.

Research focus areas

  • Virtual reality/eye-tracking technology to assess communication efficacy
  • Use of new technology for communications
  • Impacts of vaccination schedule changes
  • Development of technology-based learning tools

Impact Areas

Highlighting health communication and promotion strategies

ORAU’s strategic approach to understanding and engaging with in-person and digital communities is recently showcased in a number of ways:

  • A social media hashtag campaign for the CDC
  • Capacity building to improve opioid addiction communication strategies
  • Social listening research to identify vaccine hesitancy trends on Twitter

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Reducing addiction stigma in the media

ORAU and the University of Kentucky’s Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues (IRJCI) sponsored a workshop to reduce stigma and increase compassion for those suffering from opioid use disorder:

  • Journalists trained to better understand substance use and recovery helps to promote ethical reporting, reduce stigma, and inspire hope.
  • “Person-focused” word choices (e.g., person with opioid use disorder) promote compassion and reduce reinforcing the stigma of addiction.

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Contact us

If you have questions about ORAU's research partnerships, contact us at (865) 576-1717 or .