KCHC Kentucky Conference on Health Communication
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2004 Conference: The Future of Health Communication: Bridging Across Disciplines

The 8th biennial Kentucky Conference on Health Communication (KCHC) was held April 15-17, 2004. (Photographs)

KCHC 2004 began with a day of pre-conference, Health Communication and Health Psychology: Common Themes, Unique Contributions. A panel of four distinguished health psychologists spent the morning discussing their work. Dolores Albarracin, University of Florida, discussed the implications of unrealistic expectations in persuasion and implications for communication policy. Joshua Smyth, Syracuse University, presented his work on scriptotherapy and the health effects of disclosing through personal writing. Alex Rothman, University of Minnesota, discussed how to shape perceptions through message framing. And Richard Petty, The Ohio State University, provided a detailed overview of the Elaboration Likelihood Model’s approach to health behavior change. The afternoon was spent with a question and answer session, and panelist/audience discussion.

The conference on Friday and Saturday addressed The Future of Health Communication: Bridging Across Disciplines. On Friday, several scholars presented their work in both competitive paper sessions and panel sessions. The first session addressed Communication, Social Support and Illness, and featured the top student paper (Social Support and the Family: A Study of the Functions of a Computer-Mediated Social Support Group for Primary Caregivers, Karla Kuhlman, Ohio University) and the top young scholar paper (Testing a Model of Communication, Uncertainty and Emotional Well-Being in Older Breast Cancer Survivors, Margaret F. Clayton, U of North Carolina, Chapel Hill). Papers also were presented on communication and support groups for people living with cancer, and a grounded theory approach to social support for women living with diabetes.

Next, a panel on the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Information Service discussed opportunities for collaborative research through NCI and CIS. During Friday’s luncheon, Gary Kreps, the winner of the 2004 Donohew Health Communication Scholar award, presented Hints about Information Dissemination: The Health Information National Trends Survey. Afternoon sessions included papers on nationwide newspaper coverage of genetically modified foods; a health outcome measure for older, non-English speakers; and college students’ sources of information about SARS-related information in Taiwan. The final session was a panel from the CDC on models for reaching diverse audiences, including Spanish-speaking women, school-aged children, health care providers, and individuals with low to average literacy skills.

On Saturday, researchers presented their work on parents’ communication satisfaction with physicians via telemedicine; ethnographies in health communication; survivors’ narratives of intimate abuse; and parents’ perceptions of their college students’ health and health risk behavior. This session was followed by a panel of distinguished health communication scholars presenting models of programs and issues in graduate education in health communication. Finally, the conference wrapped up with an address by Michael Slater, Colorado State University, on Health Communication: Building Bridges Across and Within Disciplines.

 Pre-Conference Workshop:Health Communication and Health Psychology: Common Themes, Unique Contributions

2006 Conference: Save the Date

April 20-22, 2006
Lexington, Kentucky

Updated: September 9, 2004