Public relations and governmental public health services: analysis of the health education programs in three Massachusetts health units
Smith, E. Jane
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Statement of Problem: Problems of health are of personal and social concern. Yet, unless people are individually involved, health problems fail to arouse their interest. Thus, to protect the general welfare of society, government must provide public health services. And bringing the need for such services to the attention of the public is the function of health education. With this latter objective the importance of public relations emerges -- the communicating of good health practices to the desired audience at the proper time in the most effective way. Conclusions: The findings, analyzed under public relations criteria, indicate that the health educators interviewed appreciate public relations; however, they do not understand all of its implications. They still regard it as a somewhat unscientific function, emphasizing the human relations aspect. In addition, it is considered as a service rather than staff function. Finally, public relations is considered valuable as an aid to health education programs, but not as a practice in itself, grounded in philosophy of social responsibility. [TRUNCATED]
Thesis (M.S.)--Boston University
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