Describe the benefits/advantages and challenges/risks of using social media for public health communication.

Social media channels are designed to be engaging; however, these media are often used by public health organizations and practitioners as a means to disseminate mass information, rather than to engage audiences in meaningful interaction. Harnessing social media to best achieve public health outcomes is a topic of much discussion and study in the public health community.

Analyze public health communication via social media in your community. Follow a public health organization, local or national, on a social media channel (e.g., Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn) for at least 3 weeks.

Address the following:

1. Describe the benefits/advantages and challenges/risks of using social media for public health communication.

2. Describe the organization you followed and the social media channel you selected. What kind of information is shared on social media by the organization?

3. To what degree does the organization engage with users/followers (e.g., responding to questions, engaging in conversation, hosting “chats” with experts, soliciting information)?

4. What improvements or suggestions would you make to this organization regarding its social media engagement? Why?

Use at least three scholarly sources to support your paper.

APA Style required.

An abstract is not required.

RUBRIC

1. Overview of Using Social Media for Public Health Communication: Overview is clear and comprehensive. An expert analysis of the benefits/advantages and challenges/risks of using social media for public health communication is provided

2. Information Shared by Organization on Social Media: Excellent description of the organization followed and type of information shared on social media. Clear examples are included. It is evident the student followed the organization for several weeks.

3. Organizational Engagement Using Social MediaConclusion is comprehensive and clearly articulated. A strong description and justification for the decision makers who would need the information from the HIA are incorporated.

4. Suggested Improvements for Using Social Media for Public Health Communication: Recommendations to improve the use of social media for public health communication are well-described and include justification and purpose. Student addresses all of the issues stated in the assignment criteria.

5. Thesis Development and Purpose: Thesis and/or main claim are comprehensive. The essence of the paper is contained within the thesis. Thesis statement makes the purpose of the paper clear.

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