Prevention and health regulation behavior by understandable personal narratives
07 / 2012 - 12 / 2015
Health regulation behavior is negatively related to lower health literacy and lower socio-economical status (SES), resulting, for instance, in higher absenteeism from work. Typically, the communication strategy aimed at prevention is to present printed health education materials that show pictures to attract the target group's attention, that provide arguments to change their intention, and use short sentences to guarantee the information's comprehensibility. Yet, this strategy is often ineffective for target groups with lower SES/health literacy. In this project, we assess the effectiveness of an innovative communication strategy that aims to improve the target group's ability to act upon their often good intentions, by providing them with information to support their implementation and coping planning abilities in the form of authentic and personal audio-visual narratives. A PhD and a post-doc study are proposed. The PhD will address the question: To what extent, and how, does a narrative communication intervention focusing on action and coping planning lead to improved health regulation by workers with lower SES/health literacy? The project focuses on truck drivers in the transport sector and is conducted in collaboration with occupational health service 365/ZIN (former ArboNed). 365/ZIN collaborates with insurance companies in the transport sector, which guarantees access to relevant participants and data on health and absenteeism. The post-doc project will address the question: To what extent are the insights derived from the PhD project applicable to other narrative interventions and target groups? This project aims to chart the generalizability of the in-depth results obtained in the PhD project.