Effect Of Mass Media In Improving Health Status Of Rural And Urban Dwellers

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Effect Of Mass Media In Improving Health Status Of Rural And Urban Dwellers


Abstract


This study was carried out on the effect of mass media in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers using Onitsha Resident in Anambra State as a case study. The study was specifically carried out to ascertain whether the mass media serves as a significant tool for managing public health issues in Nigeria, find out whether mass media effectively disseminate health information to rural and urban dwellers, find out if the mass media helps to improve health knowledge of rural and urban dwellers, and ascertain if mass media help to improve the health practices of rural and urban dwellers. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprised of Onitsha Resident, Anambra State. In determining the sample size, the researcher conveniently selected 160 respondents and 141 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables, while the hypotheses was tested using Chi-square Statistical tool. The result of the findings reveals that the mass media serves as a significant tool for managing public health issues in Nigeria. The study further reveals that the mass media help to improve the health practices of rural and urban dwellers. Therefore, it is recommended that News and program content need to be carefully sourced and tailored to ensure that listeners in cities and at the grassroots, receive updated and accurate information about health matters. To mention but a few.


Table of Content


  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Research Hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the Study
  • 1.7 Scope of the Study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Definition of Terms
  • 1.10 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions
  • 4.4 Test of Hypotheses

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

The fulfilment of specific communication demands is critical to society’s continued survival. These requirements according to Baran S. and Davis, D. (2012) existed long before Johann Gutenberg invented the printing machine and Samuel Morse invented the electric telegraph. However, there are instances where the functions of mass communication are undesirable from the perspective of society or the individual. Surveillance, interpretation, connection, transfer of values, socialization, entertainment, and sharing of health information are all tasks that broadcast media such as radio and television provide for society.

An important topic of discussion nowadays is the mass media and the role of mass media in promoting the socio-economic development. One such socio-economic development by mass media is the field of health. Health issues and health care is an important field in the development of the country.The death rate is declining day by day due to the improvements in the field of health care. Hence there should be a good platform for showcasing these health developments. Mass media provides this platform. These developments should be promoted by mass media and hence the article highlights the role of mass media in health care development. The health issues prevalent in the world are focused by mass media and presented to the world. Health communication is known as the study and practice of transmitting promotional health information, such as through public health campaigns, health education, and between doctor and patient (Dutta-Bergman, M. 2004). The goal of sharing health information is to improve health literacy and hence affect personal health decisions. The act of broadcasting and distributing information pertaining to health concerns to the population via radio is known as health communication. Radio broadcasting is the best and easiest means to deliver information and reach an audience, and it has a larger audience than television since radio is more cost-effective because it can reach people at home, at work, and in their automobiles. The audience can listen to the primetime hour of radio at any time since it used to transmit a variety of programs. The use of radio to convey health information is extremely beneficial since it reaches a large audience and is cost-effective. Health practitioners have recognized the advantages of utilizing radio to broadcast health messages and have used it to educate listeners about illnesses. Because “serendipitous learning via radio can serve as a major mode of health information collecting,” producing and airing this variety of programming is crucial for persons exposed to health messages (Dutta-Bergman, 2004). Because radio can quickly reach individuals, it has a significant influence on their lives. The prime time hour of radio broadcast is also convenient for listeners, therefore it may be a major success for the radio broadcast and has the potential to shape individual behavior in health-related subjects.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The necessity of successful health message transmission to the general public has prompted health communicators, educators, and advocates to research and use social media and other forms of mass media. Recent study has uncovered how people really interact with health information and how they like to interact with health information. This is because one of the fundamental goals of public health is to effectively communicate health information to individuals and communities. Individuals, groups, and societies may all benefit from timely and accurate communication. Individuals’ awareness, knowledge, attitudes, self-efficacy, abilities, and commitment to behavior change can all be affected by effective health communication (Nguyen & Bellamy, 2006). When creating health education campaigns, health educators and professionals frequently use a diverse strategy to bridge the gap between real and desired means of vital health information acquisition. In addition to face-to-face programming, health education campaigns frequently include television advertising, Internet programs, radio broadcasts, and public service announcements.

However New technologies have evolved in the recent decade, leaving radio underused in the realm of health teaching and promotion. Though radio announcements and programs are still often used in health education campaigns, health communication practitioners and scholars are increasingly focusing on the growing availability of health information on the Internet.Although there is a lack of information and accessible primary research, this form of communication has a very important role in use of health care interventions. The mass media has positive impact on health issues and behavior except a few negative impacts. Due to the growing need of mass media in the field of health care and several types of research done on this topic, the researchers have chosen this topic to review.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The broad objective of this study is to examine effect of mass media in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers. Specifically the study sought to:

  1. Ascertain whether the mass media serves as a significant tool for managing public health issues in Nigeria.
  2. Find out whether mass media effectively disseminate health information to rural and urban dwellers.
  3. Find out if the mass media helps to improve health knowledge of rural and urban dwellers.
  4. Ascertain if mass media help to improve the health practices of rural and urban dwellers.

1.4 Research Questions

The research is guided by the following research question:

  1. Does the mass media serve as a significant tool for managing public health issues in Nigeria?
  2. Does the mass media effectively disseminate health information to rural and urban dwellers?
  3. Does the mass media help to improve health knowledge of rural and urban dwellers?
  4. Does the mass media help to improve the health practices of rural and urban dwellers?

1.5 Research Hypothesis

  • Ho: The mass media is not effective in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers.
  • Ha: The mass media is effective in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers.

1.6 Significance of the Study

Findings from the study would have both empirical and practical significance. Practically, it will contribute to the articulation of radio broadcast usage in sharing healthcare information and shaping health belief of community audience. Practically the study will serve as a document for government and non-governmental organizations, policy makers and healthcare professionals on the need to regulate the credibility of health information shared on radio presentations. Additionally, the result of the study will serve as a data base to mass communication researchers who may be interested in learning the global healthcare infodemic. Empirically, the study will serve as reference material to both scholars and student who wishes to conduct further studies in related field.


1.7 Scope of the Study

The scope of this study borders on effect of mass media in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers. It will ascertain the extent at which health messages are communicated through media. The study is however delimited Onitsha Resident in Anambra State.


1.8 Limitation of the Study

This research project, like all human endeavors, had some challenges that threatened to derail the study’s completion. One of the reasons is that the time allotted for this work was so limited that the researcher did not have enough time to complete the task thoroughly. During data collection, the researcher also had to put forth extra effort to understand the respondents’ interview schedules, several of whom fell into the incomprehensible age group. Also, there were financial and transportation constraints to deal with. Insufficient funds tend to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire, interview).


1.9 Definition of Terms

Media:

Media refers to the communication channels through which we disseminate news, music, movies, education, promotional messages and other data.

Public Health Behavior:

Health behaviors are actions individuals take that affect their health. They include actions that lead to improved health, such as eating well and being physically active, and actions that increase one’s risk of disease, such as smoking, excessive alcohol intake, and risky sexual behavior.

Health Communication:

Health communication is the study and practice of communicating promotional health information, such as in public health campaigns, health education, and between doctor and patient. The purpose of disseminating health information is to influence personal health choices by improving health literacy.


1.10 Organization of the Study

The study is categorized into five chapters. The first chapter presents the background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, research questions and hypothesis, the significance of the study, scope/limitations of the study, and definition of terms. The chapter two covers the review of literature with emphasis on conceptual framework, theoretical framework, and empirical review. Likewise, the chapter three which is the research methodology, specifically covers the research design, population of the study, sample size determination, sample size, and selection technique and procedure, research instrument and administration, method of data collection, method of data analysis, validity and reliability of the study, and ethical consideration. The second to last chapter being the chapter four presents the data presentation and analysis, while the last chapter(chapter five) contains the summary, conclusion and recommendation.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on theeffect of mass media in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers using Onitsha Resident in Anambra State as a case study.The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.


5.2 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was the effect of mass media in improving health status of rural and urban dwellers using Onitsha Resident in Anambra State as a case study. The study is was specifically carried out to ascertain whether the mass media serves as a significant tool for managing public health issues in Nigeria, find out whether mass media effectively disseminate health information to rural and urban dwellers, find out if the mass media helps to improve health knowledge of rural and urban dwellers, and ascertain if mass media help to improve the health practices of rural and urban dwellers.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 141 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent were Onitsha Resident, Anambra State.


5.3 Conclusions

Based on the findings of this study, the researcher concluded that;

  1. The mass media serves as a significant tool for managing public health issues in Nigeria.
  2. The mass media effectively disseminate health information to rural and urban dwellers.
  3. The mass media helps to improve health knowledge of rural and urban dwellers.
  4. The mass media help to improve the health practices of rural and urban dwellers.

5.4 Recommendation

From the findings of the study, the following recommendations are made:

  1. Radio stations need to recognize that they have an important role to play in the fight to minimize misinformation in Nigeria and across Africa thus this should enhance their effectiveness in performing their social responsibility of sensitizing the masses on health matters.
  2. News and program content need to be carefully sourced and tailored to ensure that listeners in cities and at the grassroots, receive updated and accurate information about health matters.
  3. Government and private sector support are also necessary for radio to function effectively in Africa. Sadly, many radio stations are underfunded.
  4. Policymakers and Government should ensure they build the confidence and trust of the masses toward accepting health communication messages via radio and as well ensure that government provides it in large quantity to reach the rural dweller.
  5. Civic societies should endeavor to collaborate with knowledgeable healthcare workers to go on outreach and enlighten the masses on the need to take the health communication messages shared on radio.

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Frequently Asked Questions


Why are rural residents more likely to be unhealthy?

Rural residents report less leisure-time physical activity and lower seatbelt use than their urban counterparts. They also have higher rates of poverty, less access to healthcare, and are less likely to have health insurance. All of these factors can lead to poor health outcomes.

Is there a disparity in use of healthcare services between rural-urban areas?

Disparities in use of healthcare services between rural and urban areas have been empirically attributed to several factors. This study explores the existence of this disparity and its implication for planning and managing healthcare delivery systems. 

What is the health gap between urban and rural America?

A series of studies from CDC is drawing attention to the significant gap in health between rural and urban Americans. Rural Americans are more likely to die from heart disease, cancer, unintentional injury, chronic lower respiratory disease, and stroke than their urban counterparts.

Are patients in rural areas more loyal to healthcare providers?

However, while patients in the urban areas expressed more loyalty to a provider, the rural residents seemed to be fascinated by those qualities that were lacking in the facilities located in their areas. 

Does mass media influence health-related behaviour change?

We conclude that mass media campaigns can produce positive changes or prevent negative changes in health-related behaviours across large populations. We assess what contributes to these outcomes, such as concurrent availability of required services and products, availability of community-based programmes, and policies that support behaviour change.

What are the benefits of mass media to health?

Road safety mass media campaigns have promoted reductions in the frequency of road accidents and deaths through increases in uses of seat belts, booster seats for children, and helmets for bicyclists, skateboarders, and motorcyclists, and reductions in speeding, driver fatigue, and drink driving.

How does mass media influence people’s decisions?

Since mass media messages reach large audiences, changes in behaviour that become norms within an individual’s social network might influence that person’s decisions without them having been directly exposed to or initially persuaded by the campaign.

How does mass media influence public policy and public behaviour?

Mass media campaigns can prompt public discussion of health issues and lead to changes in public policy, resulting in constraints on individuals’ behaviour and thereby change. 

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