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Government support and mass communications: Learning from our Experience Presentation by Fiona Lynch-Magor Assistant Secretary Office for an Ageing Australia Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing. Promotion of eye health through:.

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Government support and mass communications:Learning from our ExperiencePresentation by Fiona Lynch-MagorAssistant SecretaryOffice for an Ageing AustraliaAustralian Government Department of Health and Ageing

promotion of eye health through
Promotion of eye healththrough:
  • Government support – overview of Australian Health System
  • Mass communications – case study of Australia’s National Tobacco Campaign
australia s health system
Australia’s health system:
  • Federal Government:funds medical (GPs and specialists), pharmaceutical and hospital services, health promotion and disease prevention activities
  • State Governments:deliver services in public hospitals, to those in need (eg. smoking cessation services, subsidised spectacles schemes)
  • Non-government sector:provide community-based services complementary to those provided by the government sector (eg. Macular Degeneration Foundation provides community education/information on the condition and available treatments).
Development of the:National Framework for Action to Promote Eye Health and Prevent Avoidable Blindness and Vision Loss
Sponsorship of World Health Assembly Resolution
  • Wide consultation with Eye Health Sector and State Governments
  • Funding for National Eye Health Initiative announced in Federal Budget.
national tobacco strategy
National Tobacco Strategy:
  • Smoking is the single greatest preventable cause of premature death and disease in developed countries
  • The reduction in smoking rates over post-war years stalled in the early 1990s at 27% of men and 23% of women
  • Australian daily smoking rates for smokers aged over 15 years have fallen from 19.5% in 2001 to 17.7% in 2004.
Reductions are due to a co-operative government and non government sector response through the National Tobacco Strategy which aims:
  • To prevent smoking uptake
  • To encourage and assist smokers to quit
  • To eliminate harmful exposure to tobacco smoke
  • To reduce the harm associated with continuing use of tobacco.
government initiatives
Government initiatives:
  • Taxation to discourage smoking, particularly by young people
  • Health warnings on tobacco packets (example available for examination)
  • Banning tobacco advertising in all forms of media
  • Banning tobacco sponsorship of sporting and cultural activities
  • Banning smoking in enclosed public places
  • Anti-smoking campaigns (particularly National Tobacco Campaign).
National Tobacco Campaign:Aims to personalise the risks of smoking under the catch-cry of:“Every cigarette is doing you damage”
campaign elements
Campaign elements:
  • Television, radio, print and outdoor advertising
  • Public relations activity and promotions
  • Non-English strategy
  • Service provider strategy
  • Campaign website (


  • 1997 – artery, lung and tumour
  • 1998 – brain and a smoker calling a Quitline
  • 2000 – lung, eye.
why macular degeneration
Why Macular Degeneration?
  • Macular degeneration is the leading cause of blindness in Australia and smoking is the major preventable cause of this condition
  • Fear of blindness
  • Need for a fresh message, particularly for younger people.
impacts of the campaign
Impacts of the Campaign
  • Calls to Quitlines increased
  • Target population related to messages
  • Target population believed messages
  • Smoking prevalence rates declined.
national tobacco strategy and national tobacco campaign lessons
National Tobacco StrategyandNational Tobacco Campaign Lessons:
  • Social marketing campaigns require thorough planning, analysis, research and evaluation
  • Funding commitment needs to be sustained

“Health promotion policy combines diverse but complementary approaches including legislation, fiscal measures, taxation and organizational change. It is coordinated action that leads to health, income and social policies that foster greater equity. Joint action contributes to ensuring safer and healthier goods and services, healthier public services, and cleaner, more enjoyable environments.”Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion, 1986

  • Process needs to be integrated and coordinated: