On the road to well-being: The development of a communication framework to speak about sexual health

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, Atlanta, GA.
Public Health Reports (Impact Factor: 1.55). 03/2013; 128 Suppl 1:43-52.
Source: PubMed


Recognizing the need to work with all partners who have an interest in addressing sexual health issues, we explored values held by diverse stakeholders in the United States. Based on these findings, we developed a framework for use in communicating about sexual health issues and potential solutions.
Our methods included an environmental scan, small-group metaphor elicitation and message framing assessments, interviews, and online surveys with diverse members of the public and health professionals.
Of four overarching value-based themes, two were best accepted across audiences: the first theme emphasized the importance of protecting health along the road of life through enabling good choices, and the second called for adding health promotion approaches to traditional disease prevention control. Nearly all supporting statements evaluated were effective and can be used to support either of the two best accepted overarching themes.
Although there is a great diversity of opinion regarding how to address sexual health issues in the U.S., among diverse stakeholders we found some common values in our exploratory work. These common values were translated into message frameworks. In particular, the idea of broadening sexual health programs to include wellness-related approaches to help expand disease control and prevention efforts resonated with stakeholders across the political spectrum. These findings show promise for improved sexual health communication and a foundation on which to build support across various audiences, key opinion leaders, and stakeholders.

5 Reads
  • Public Health Reports 03/2013; 128 Suppl 1:1-4. · 1.55 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Medical education in sexual health in the United States and Canada is lacking. Medical students and practicing physicians report being underprepared to adequately address their patients' sexual health needs. Recent studies have shown little instruction on sexual health in medical schools and little consensus around the type of material medical students should learn. To address and manage sexual health issues, medical students need improved education and training. This meeting report aims to present findings from a summit on the current state of medical school education in sexual health and provides recommended strategies to better train physicians to address sexual health. To catalyze improvements in sexual health education in medical schools, the summit brought together key U.S. and Canadian medical school educators, sexual health educators, and other experts. Attendees reviewed and discussed relevant data and potential recommendations in plenary sessions and then developed key recommendations in smaller breakout groups. Findings presented at the summit demonstrate that the United States and Canada have high rates of poor sexual health outcomes and that sexual health education in medical schools is variable and in some settings diminished. To address these issues, government, professional, and student organizations are working on efforts to promote sexual health. Several universities already have sexual health curricula in place. Evaluation mechanisms will be essential for developing and refining sexual health education. To be effective, sexual health curricula need to be integrated longitudinally throughout medical training. Identifying faculty champions and supporting student efforts are strategies to increase sexual health education. Sexual health requires a multidisciplinary approach, and cross-sector interaction between various public and private entities can help facilitate change. Areas important to address include: core content and placement in the curriculum; interprofessional education and training for integrated care; evaluation mechanisms; faculty development and cooperative strategies. Initial recommendations were drafted for each.
    Journal of Sexual Medicine 04/2013; 10(4):924-38. DOI:10.1111/jsm.12142 · 3.15 Impact Factor
  • Public Health Reports 05/2014; 129(3):222-228. · 1.55 Impact Factor

Susan J Robinson