While some professors were enjoying some much-needed time off this summer, others were busy at work evaluating entries for the NPHIC/Grady College Awards of Excellence in Public Health Communications. Four Grady College faculty members judged the entries submitted from across the country. The awards program is co-sponsored by the National Public Health Information Coalition and Grady College. The winners were announced during the National Conference on Health Communication, Marketing and Media August 19-21.
There were more around 275 entries submitted for the 17 different categories including print, media relations, radio and television, and website/social media highlighting the best work in public health communications. The entries came from state and local health departments – with in-house work judged independently of materials that were outsourced or done by an advertising or public relations agency. All of the entrants had to be submitted by a NPHIC member. The winning entries this year dealt with a myriad of topics ranging from wellness in the workplace and vaccinating teens, to emerging flu outbreaks and smoking cessation.
“This is a great opportunity to surface and recognize the best work in public health on the communications front,” commented Glen Nowak, director of the Center for Health and Risk Communication.
This is the second year that Grady College and its Center for Health and Risk Communication have judged the awards. This year’s Grady-affiliated judges were Karen King, Jeong-Yeob Han, Dodie Cantrell-Bickley, Wally Eberhard (retired professor of journalism) and Nowak. Laura Alexander, executive director of the Athens Health Network and David Daigle, a senior communications specialist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, also served as judges.
Nowak also said involvement from the college provides a great resource that can be used as teaching aids of examples of how health departments are handling health issues through communications. Most of the winning entries can be found online: www.nphic.org/conferences/2014/afe2014 .