Communicating About Health: Current Issues and Perspectives / Edition 3

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An ideal combination of communication theory and practical advice, Communicating About Health: Current Issues and Perspectives, Fourth Edition, is an indispensable resource for readers looking to improve their communication abilities in the health care field. Written by Athena du Pr —an experienced researcher and noted scholar—the text offers an excellent balance of theory and practice; research and pedagogy; coverage of patient/caregiver issues; and material on the current, historical, and philosophical backgrounds of communication in health care. In addition to enhancing features found in the previous edition, this new edition includes a greater emphasis on theory, narrative, and technology in order to reflect changes in the health industry. What's New to the Fourth Edition?
• A new chapter—eHealth, mHealth, and Telemedicine—describes the global impact of smartphone and tablet technology, tailored health messages, and the Internet on the health industry
• A new chapter, Health Care Administration, Human Resources, Marketing, and PR, provides in-depth coverage of the contributions and communication strategies involved in leadership, morale, service excellence, community engagement, and more
• An expanded discussion of communication not only involves physicians and nurses but also pharmacists, allied health personnel, dentists, therapists, and others
• New features—"Can You Guess?," "What Do You Think?," "Check It Out!," and "In Your Experience"—offer a higher level of engagement with students and stimulate critical thinking and discussion

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Communicating About Health is dynamic and exciting to read. It continues to represent a comprehensive and pragmatic approach to health communication. It integrates past, current, and developing trends."--Ellen R. Cohn, University of Pittsburgh

"This text is a comprehensive, thought-provoking, and engaging examination of health communication in theory and practice."--Jill Yamasaki, University of Houston

"Athena du Pré provides a sophisticated, content-rich, and engaging overview of the current issues and perspectives in health communication. By combining actual lived experiences, research support, theoretical foundations, communication skill strategies, and ethical considerations in health care issues, this book appeals to many audiences including health care professionals, patients, caregivers, researchers, and health communication educators."--Randa Garden, Wayne State College

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195380330
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication date: 8/17/2009
  • Edition description: Third Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 496
  • Sales rank: 1,053,686
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Athena du Pré, Ph.D. is Professor in the Department of Communication Arts and director of the Strategic Communication & Leadership master's degree program and the Health Communication Leadership graduate-level certificate program at the University of West Florida.

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Table of Contents

All chapters end with a summary, key terms and theories, discussion questions, and answers to Can You Guess?
Part I. Establishing a Context for Health Communication
1. Introduction
The Philosophy Behind This Book
What Is Health?
What is Health Communication?
--Defining Communication
--Personal Goals
--Shared Meaning
--Defining Health Communication
--History of Health Communication
Medical Models
--Biomedical Model
--Biopsychosocial Model
Importance of Health Communication
--Six Important Issues
Current Issues in Health Communication
--Emphasis on Efficiency
--Patient Empowerment
--Global Health Needs and Intercultural Competence
--Changing Populations
Box 1.1 Career Opportunities: Profiles of More Than 125 Health-Related Jobs
Box 1.2 Learn While You Make a Difference
Box 1.3 Perspectives: True Stories About Health Communication Experiences
Box 1.4 Theoretical Foundations: The Basis for Health Communication
Box 1.5 Resources: Health Communication Organizations and Resources
Box 1.6 Perspectives: A Memorable Hospital Experience
Box 1.7 Ethical Considerations: An Essential Component of Heath Communication
Box 1.8 Perspectives: Down, But Not Out
Chapter 2. History and Current Issues
Medicine in Ancient Times
Medieval Religion and Health Care
--Medical Spiritualism
--Barber Surgeons
--Science and Magic
--End of an Era
Renaissance Philosophy and Health Care
--Principle of Verification
--Cartesian Dualism
Health Care in the New World
--Health Conditions
--Hippocrates' Influence
--Women's Role
The Rise of Orthodox Medicine
--Population Shifts
--Germ Theory
--Research and Technology
--Campaign of Orthodox Medicine
--Flexner Report
--Decline of Sectarian Medicine
Twentieth-Century Health Care
--Medicine and Free Enterprise
Putting the Brakes on Health Care Costs
--Health and Wealth
--Reform Efforts
--Managed Care
--Conventional Insurance
--Health Maintenance Organization (HMO)
--Preferred Provider Organization (PPO)
--Point of Service (POS)
--High-Deductible Health Plan (HDHP)
--Organizations' Perspective
--Advantages of Managed Care
--Disadvantages of Managed Care
--Managed Care Around the World
Box 2.1 The Hippocratic Oath
Box 2.2 Perspectives: Sick in the Head?
Box 2.3 Managed Care at a Glance
Box 2.4 Ethical Considerations: Classroom Debate on Managed Care
Box 2.5 Resources: Before You Select a Managed Care Plan
Part Two. The Roles of Patients and Caregivers
Chapter 3. Patient-Caregiver Communication
Medical Talk and Power Differentials
--Knowledge and Power
--Assertive and Nonassertive Behavior
--Questions and Directives
--Patronizing Behavior
--Why Do We Do It
--Shifting Paradigm
Collaborative Communication
--Theoretical Foundations
--The Emerging Model
Communication Skill Builders
--Motivational Interviewing
--Cultivating Dialogue
--Nonverbal Encouragement
--Verbal Encouragement
--Narrative Medicine
--Tips for Patients
Healing Environments
--Soothing Surroundings
--Easy Communication with Loved Ones
Box 3.1 Resources: Journals That Feature Health Communication Research
Box 3.2 Ethical Considerations: Therapeutic Privilege
Box 3.3 Doorknob Disclosures
Box 3.4 Stepping Over the Line
Box 3.5 Ouch!
Box 3.6 Perspectives: A Mother's Experience at the Dentist
Box 3.7 Theoretical Foundations: Integrative Health Theory
Box 3.8 Career Opportunities: Health Communication Research
Chapter 4. Patient Perspectives
Patient Socialization
Voice of Lifeworld
--Feelings Versus Evidence
--Specific Versus Diffuse
Patient Characteristics
--Nature of the Illness
--Patient Disposition
--Communication Skills
--Attentiveness and Respect
--A Sense of Control
--Genuine Warmth and Honesty
Cooperation and Consent
--Reasons for Noncooperation
--Caregivers' Investment
--Informed Consent
Illness and Personal Identity
--Reactions to Illness
Box 4.1 Perspectives: The Agony of Uncertainty
Box 4.2 Career Opportunities: Patient Advocacy
Box 4.3 Is Satisfaction Overrated?
Box 4.4 Cash for Cooperation?
Box 4.5 Ethical Considerations: Patients' Right to Informed Consent
Chapter 5. Caregiver Perspective
Gaining Entrance
--Science-Based Curriculum
--Communication Training
--Hidden Curriculum
--Identity in Limbo
--Withdrawal and Resentment
Systems-Level Influences on Caregivers
--Theoretical Foundations
--Time Constraints
Psychological Influences on Caregivers
Stress and Burnout
--Causes of Stress
--Communication Deficits
--Other Factors
--Effects of Stress
--Healthy Strategies
Medical Mistakes
--Why Mistakes Happen
--What Happens After a Mistake?
--Communication Skill Builder: Managing Medical Mistakes
--From the Beginning
--If an Error Does Occur
Interdisciplinary Teamwork
--Difficulties and Drawbacks
--Communication Skill Builders: Working in Teams
Box 5.1. Medical School Reform
Box 5.2. Sleep Deprivation: Necessary or Not?
Box 5.3. Ethical Considerations: Privacy Regulations Incite Controversy
Box 5.4. Perspectives: Blowing the Whistle on an Impaired Physician
Box 5.5. Communication Skill Builder: Dealing with Difficult Patients
Part III. Social and Cultural Issues
Chapter 6. Diversity in Health Care
Theoretical Foundations
Status Differences
Health Literacy
--Communication Skill Builders: Surmounting Status and Literacy Barriers
Gender Differences
--Women in Medicine
--Sex Differences and Communication
Sexual Orientation
--Different Care and Outcomes
--High Risk, Low Knowledge
--Patient-Caregiver Communication
--Racial Diversity Among Health Professionals
---Historic Patterns of Acceptance
---Communication Effects
Language Differences
--Communication Skill Builders: Interacting with Persons Who Have Disabilities
--Communication Skill Builders: Talking with Children About Illness
--Older Adults
--Theoretical Foundations: Effects of Ageism
--Implications of Ageism and Overaccommodation
--Communication Patterns
--Promising Options
--Communication Technology and Older Adults
Communication Skill Builders: Reaching Marginalized Populations
Box 6.1 Ethical Considerations: Who Gets What Care?
Box 6.2 Genetic Profiling: A View Into Your Health Future
Box 6.3. Ethical Considerations: Affirmative Action Justified or Not?
Box 6.4 Perspectives: Language Barriers in a Health Care Emergency
Box 6.5 Career Opportunities: Diversity Awareness
Box 6.6 Perspectives: My Disability Doesn't Show
Chapter 7. Cultural Conceptions of Health and Illness
Eastern and Western Perspectives
A Profile of Cultures
--Asian and Pacific Island
The Nature of Health and Illness
--Health as Organic
--Health as Harmony
Social Implications of Disease
--Disease as a Curse
--Stigma of Disease
--The Morality of Prevention
Patient and Caregiver Roles
--Mechanics and Machines
--Parents and Children
--Spiritualists and Believers
--Providers and Consumers
Communication Skill Builders: Developing Cultural Competence
Holistic Care
Viagra: A Case Study in Health-Culture Overlap
--Implication 1: To Be a Man You Have to Get It Up
--Implication 2: To a Physical Ailment Let There Be a Physical Remedy
--Implication 3: Women Are Passive but Grateful Recipients of Male Attention
--Implication 4: Real Men are White and Straight
--Implication 5: Intimacy Equals Vaginal Penetration
Box 7.1 Resources: More About Culture and Health
Box 7.2 Theoretical Foundations: Theory of Health as Expanded Consciousness
Box 7.3 Perspectives: Thai Customs and a Son's Duty
Box 7.4 Ethical Considerations: Physician as Parent or Partner?
Box 7.5. Holistic Medicine at a Glance
Box 7.6. Career Opportunities: Holistic Medicine
Part IV: Coping and Health Resources
Chapter 8. Social Support, Family Caregiving, and End of Life
Conceptual Overview
--Theoretical Perspectives
--Sense of Control
Coping and Communication
--Action-Facilitating Support
--Nurturing Support
--Communication Skill Builders: Supportive Listening
--Communication Skill Builders: Allowing Emotional Expression
--Social Networks
When Support Goes Wrong
--Friends Disappear
--Hurtful Jests
--Too Much Support
--A Note of Encouragement
Animals As Companions
Transformative Experiences
Friends and Family as Caregivers
--Profile of the Family Caregiver
--The Economics of Family Caregiving
--Stress and Burnout
--Caring for Caregivers
End-of-Life Experiences
--Life at All Costs
--Death with Dignity
Slow Medicine
Advance-Care Directives
Communication Skill Builders: Delivering Bad News
Communication Skill Builders: Coping with Death
Box 8.1 When Communication Ability is Compromised
Box 8.2 Theory of Problematic Integration
Box 8.3 Organ Donations: The Nicholas Effect
Box 8.4 Perspectives: A Long Goodbye to Grandmother
Box 8.5 Ethical Considerations: Do People Have a Right to Die?
Box 8.6 Career Opportunities: Social Services and Mental Health
Chapter 9. eHealth, mHealth, and Telemedicine
--Theoretical Foundations
--The Three Spheres
--Weak and Strong Ties
Why And When Do We Seek Electronic Health Information?
Is Online Health Information Useful?
--Communication Skill Builders: Using the Internet
How Does Ehealth Communication Compare?
--A Doctor's Visit, Telemedicine Style
--Telemedicine in the Future
--Telemedicine as Medical Outsourcing
--Advantages for Consumers
--Advantages for Caregivers
Box 9.1: Profile of an ePatient
Box 9.2 - Career Opportunities: Health Information Technology
Part V: Communication in Health Organizations
Chapter 10. Health Care Administration, Human Resources, Marketing, And PR
Health Care Administration
--Changing Market
--Efficiency And Six Sigma
--Communication Skill Builders: Shared Vision And Dispersed Leadership
Human Resources
--Theoretical Foundations
--Communication Skill Builders: Building Great Teams
--Hire Carefully
--Teach the Culture and Values
--Continually Recruit Internal Talent
Marketing And Public Relations
--Foundations For Theory And Practice
--Focus on Relationships
--Develop Reputation, Not Only Image
--Communication Skill Builders: Two-Way Communication and Social Media
Crisis Management
Service Excellence Is Everyone's Job
Box 10.1 Resources: Six Sigma and Other Efficiency Process Models
Box 10.2 "We Hate the Rules"
Box 10.3 Career Opportunities:
Box 10.4 Staffing Shortages in Health Care
Box 10.5 A Model for Innovative Leadership
Box 10.6 Ethical Considerations: Should Health Organizations Advertise?
Box 10.7 Resources: Journals in the Field
Part VI: Media, Public Policy, and Health Promotion
Chapter 11. Health Images in the Media
Theoretical Foundations
--Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) Advertising
--Advantages of DCT Advertising
--Disadvantages of DCT Advertising
--Communication Skill Builders: Evaluating Medical Claims
--Effects on Children
--Activity Levels
--Body Images
--Health Effects
--Eternal Hope
News Coverage
--Accuracy and Fairness
--Advantages of Health News
--Communication Skill Builders: Presenting Health News
--Portrayals of Health-Related Behaviors
--Mental Illness and Dementia
--Portrays of Health Care Situations
--Entertainment and Commercialism
--Product Placement
--Entertainment-Education and Programming
--Impact of Persuasive Entertainment
Media Literacy
--Teaching Media Literacy
Box 11.1 Career Opportunities: Health Journalism
Box 11.2 Ethical Considerations: Is the Entertainment Industry Responsible for Health Images?
Chapter 12. Public Health Crises and Health Care Reform
Mad Cow Disease
What Is Public Health?
Risk and Crisis Communication
--Managing Perceptions
--How Scared Is Scared Enough?
--In the Heat of the Moment
Case Studies: A Global Perspective
--Avian Flu
--Wrapping It Up
Health Care Reform
--Inequities and Oversights
--Less Costs More
--Out of Pocket, Out of Luck
--The American Model
--Multi-Payer Vs. Single-Payer
--Universal Coverage Models
--Massachusetts and Vermont
--National Health Care Reform
--Public Discourse About the Legislation
--Challenges and Disadvantages
Box 12.1 Career Opportunities: Public Health
Box 12.2 Theoretical Perspectives: Risk Management/Communication Framework
Box 12.3 Typhoid Mary and TB Andy
Chapter 13. Planning Health Promotion Campaigns
Background on Health Campaigns
--Motivating Factors
--Exemplary Campaigns
--Go to the Audience
--Take Action
--Measure Your Success
--Encourage Social Support
Step 1: Defining the Situation and Potential Benefits
--Current Situation
--Diverse Motivations
Step 2: Analyzing and Segmenting the Audience
--Data Collection
--Ethical Commitments
--Data-Gathering Options
--Choosing a Target Audience
--Theoretical Foundations
--Choosing a Target Audience
--Reaching Under-Informed Audiences
--Segmenting the Audience
--Audience as a Person
--Young Audiences
Step 3: Establishing Campaign Goals and Objectives
Step 4: Selecting Channels of Communication
--Channel Characteristics
--Communication Technology: Using Computers to Narrowcast Messages
--Multichannel Campaigns
Box 13.1 Career Opportunities: Health Promotion and Education
Box 13.2 Ethical Considerations: The Politics of Prevention
Chapter 14. Designing and Implementing Health Campaigns
Theories of Behaviors Change
--Health Belief Model
--Social Cognitive Theory
--Embedded Behaviors Model
--Theory of Reasoned Action
--Transtheoretical Model
--Wrapping It Up
Critical-Cultural Perspective
Step 5: Designing Campaign Messages
--Choosing a Voice
--Designing the Message
--Theoretical Foundations: Message Framing
--Community Expectations
--Logical and Emotional Appeals
Step 6: Piloting and Implementing the Campaign
Step 7: Evaluating and Maintaining the Campaign
Box 14.1. Theoretical Foundations: Synopsis of Campaign-Related Theories
Box 14.2. Ethical Considerations: Three Issues for Health Promoters to Keep in Mind
Box 14.3. Career Opportunities: Health Campaign Design and Management
Box 14.4. Theoretical Foundations: What Does Science Say About Peer Pressure?
Author Index
Subject Index

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