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TitleBehavior guidance during the COVID-19 pandemic: health literacy as a weapon against the virus
Author(s)Araújo, Rita Alexandra Manso
Lopes, Felisbela
Magalhães, Olga
Sá, Alberto
Aguiar, Ana
Health communication
Health literacy
Issue date2023
PublisherTaylor & Francis
JournalHealth Communication
CitationRita Araújo, Felisbela Lopes, Olga Magalhães, Alberto Sá & Ana Aguiar (2023) Behavior Guidance during the Covid-19 Pandemic: Health Literacy as a Weapon against the Virus, Health Communication, 38:3, 490-498, DOI: 10.1080/10410236.2021.1956070
Abstract(s)Portugal was hit by COVID-19 on the 2nd of March 2020. For almost two months, the country was confined due to the declaration of the emergency state. The confinement was always conveyed by the media, who clearly guided citizens toward preventive behaviors and so became a means of fighting this pandemic by helping the country stay home. Several authors recognize the importance of health communication and health literacy in fighting COVID-19. In a public health crisis like this, media are important actors in the promotion of health and prevention of disease, and they can have a central role in behavior change. To further understand how the media guided citizens toward preventive behaviors we applied a questionnaire survey to Portuguese journalists. More than 90% assumed citizens’ behavior guidance. Journalists’ perceptions about their work reflect a true concern with the promotion of health literacy, and their assumption of a public service mission was crucial in people’s adherence to confinement. Health literacy achieved its maximum during this confinement period, not only because these were extraordinary times but also because Portuguese journalists had an exemplar behavior.
DescriptionPublished online: 27 Jul 2021
Publisher version
AccessRestricted access (UMinho)
Appears in Collections:CECS - Artigos em revistas internacionais / Articles in international journals

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