Ethical Dilemmas in Health Campaigns

Nurit Guttman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


The design, implementation and evaluation of health campaigns involve inherent ethical concerns and dilemmas. Many of these concerns, however, are often invisible. This article presents 13 dilemmas related to 4 specific areas: (a) strategies and content of health communication campaign messages, (b) inadvertent adverse outcomes from campaign activities, (c) power and control, and (d) social values. Examples to illustrate these ethical dilemmas draw from the literature and from a study of 2 national and 3 community-based health communications interventions. The 13 ethical dilemmas are summarized as a series of practice-oriented questions to help scholars, practitioners and the those who are targeted by the campaign to identify and articulate ethical concerns embedded in health campaigns.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-190
Number of pages36
JournalHealth Communication
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1997


FundersFunder number
Health Resources and Services Administration
Division ad Medicine of the Health Resources and Services Administration


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