Relationship Building and Situational Publics

Theoretical Approaches Guiding Today’s Health Public Relations

Authored by: Linda Aldoory , Lucinda Austin

The Routledge Handbook of Health Communication

Print publication date:  April  2011
Online publication date:  August  2011

Print ISBN: 9780415883146
eBook ISBN: 9780203846063
Adobe ISBN: 9781136931673


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Health public relations is defined for this chapter as the strategic planning, implementation, and evaluation of communication tactics for purposes of influencing health attitudes, knowledge, behaviors, and decision making. While typically the practice of public relations is constrained within an organizational domain, Bardhan (2002) asserted that today’s global health arena has reconstituted health public relations as any planned communicative action that aims to develop mutually beneficial relationships between multiple stakeholders (p. 224). Some relevant stakeholders include national governments, international health organizations, pharmaceutical companies, activist groups, health service facilities, people living with a health risk or disease, and family and friends.

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