Communicating information about medication: the benefits of making it personal
Berry, D. C., Michas, I. C. and Bersellini, E. (2003) Communicating information about medication: the benefits of making it personal. Psychology & Health, 18 (1). pp. 127-139. ISSN 0887-0446
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1080/0887044031000080683
Two experiments, using a controlled empirical methodology, investigated the effects of presenting information about medicines using a more personalised style of expression. In both studies, members of the general public were given a hypothetical scenario about visiting the doctor, being diagnosed with a particular illness, and being prescribed a medication. They were also given a written explanation about the medicine and were asked to provide ratings on a number of measures, including satisfaction, perceived risk to health, and intention to comply. In Experiment 1 the explanation focused only on possible side effects of the medicine, whereas in Experiment 2 a fuller explanation was provided, which included information about the illness, prescribed drug, its dosage and contraindications as well as its side effects. In both studies, use of a more personalised style resulted in significantly higher ratings of satisfaction and significantly lower ratings of likelihood of side effects occurring and of perceived risk to health. In Experiment 2 it also led to significantly improved recall for the written information.