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Making Public Health… Sexy?

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David Tuller, coordinator for public health and journalism at the UC Berkeley (Go Bears!) School of Public Health and the Graduate School of Journalism, points out the need for better public health branding in the wake of the health care reform bill:

Beyond ensuring access to insurance, the new legislation incorporates an expansive view of health and well being–or at least a view more expansive than we’re used to. It acknowledges the obvious: that maintaining healthy communities means more than providing medical care for individuals, however crucial that step. (more)

For the first time in a long while, we’ve got the President and Congress on the public health bandwagon. But what about the American public? Tuller mentions a 2001 survey in which 80% of Americans did not think that public health had touched their lives in any way. He posits that this is because when public health is working as it should, it’s largely invisible.

The health care reform legislation (while admittedly far from perfect) includes funding for lots of great public health stuff, like menu labeling and mandates for insurers to cover preventive services. As health educators, marketers and communicators, let’s make sure our public health efforts don’t go unnoticed.


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