A Field Guide to Designing a Health Communication Strategy: A Resource for Health Communication Professionals
The purpose of this strategic communication Field Guide is to provide practical guidance to those who are in a position to design, implement, or support a strategic health communication effort. The emphasis of the guide is on developing a comprehensive, long-term approach to health communication that responds appropriately to audience needs. The guide is based on the idea that effective strategic communication is based on the convergence of “senders” and “receivers” in which the differences between the two begin to disappear. It is also based on the recognition that communication, to be effective, must not be treated as a “spare” wheel, used only when the efforts start to falter or fail, but as a “steering” wheel that can serve as a basis for making informed choices. Strategic communication is collaborative and participatory in nature, follows a sound decisionmaking process based on science, and creates sustainable efforts that improve health outcomes.