Using Digital Media as an Educational Tool in Health Communication

We’ve been hearing about it everywhere- using technology as a way to engage and educate patients. Technology advancements have health professionals trying out different methods of patient education—texting, emails, videos, virtual classrooms, and more. Sometimes it can be difficult to keep up with all the changes, but it is important to understand the benefits of using digital media as an educational tool. Many opportunities for improving health communication come from different digital media, and some of our most popular SurroundHealth articles explain some of those concepts.

Text messaging: A valuable mHealth tool for behavior change

Swapna Mehta, MPH, CHES, reviews using text messaging as an effective behavior change tool for patients with different disease states. Swapna explains that because it is an inexpensive technology that has widespread use, text messaging has many beneficial features applicable to behavior change interventions. Specific examples include the use of texting in:

  • Diabetes
  • Obesity
  • Mental Health: Bipolar disorder and Schizophrenia

Photo of HCP texting

See, hear, do: How videos improve patient education

According to Dale’s Cone of Learning, we retain 90 percent of what we see, hear, and do. In this article, Dominika Murphy, MPH, CHES, discusses how the use of videos can improve patient education. Some benefits include improving patient’s retention, illustration or modeling of health behaviors, and convenience (portability/low cost). Also included are tips for finding quality videos and building your own library.

Photo of HCP using video in patient education

Picture Perfect: Improving Health Communication with the Use of Pictures

When communicating with a patient, many times miscommunication occurs. Health Communications student, Cara Pirraglia, speaks about the advantages of using pictures in addition to text to improve communication between health professionals and patients. While not ALL pictures are digital, advancements have allowed for easier capturing and delivery of pictures.

Photo of camera

For more articles and resources on health communication, visit SurroundHealth today!


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