When policymakers of a state identify an issue that is potentially detrimental to public health, they try to not only address it but also ensure maximum promotion. In the case of Florida, one of the public health hazards that have yet to be eliminated is smoking. An anti-tobacco organization, Tobacco Free Florida launches health education programs and helps citizens quit smoking. This essay will discuss the issue of smoking in Florida and the role that social media might play in solving it.
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In November 2006, Florida citizens voted overwhelmingly in favor of a state constitutional amendment, Article X, Section 27 which aimed at comprehensive education on the dangers of tobacco use. So far, according to the statistics, the situation has improved – if in 2006, every fifth adult was smoking, by 2015 the adult smoking rate decreased down to 15,8% (Florida Health, 2016a). At the same time, the youth smoking rate is on an even bigger decline – from 10% in 2006 to 3% in 2015 (Florida Health, 2016b). Partially, this success could be attributed to TFF’s efforts and collaboration with health providers.
Health Promotion on Social Media
So far, Tobacco Free Florida has solidified its Internet presence through various social media – Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Each of the organization’s outlets has decent followership. TFF is trying to enhance followers’ engagement through marathons such as Quit Smoking in thirty days. TFF could benefit from social media marketing that would let users create their content on the provided platforms. For instance, they could share inspirational stories and tag their friends.
Both institutions and the population of a state could benefit from a mutual effort when tackling an issue. Despite its successful attempts, one may contend that health education programs by such organizations as Tobacco Free Florida would have a wider outreach were the organization more active on social media. One of the ways to put large followership to good use is to engage followers.
Florida Health. (2016a). Florida Adult and Teen Smoking Rates Hit Record Low. Web.
Florida Health. (2016b). Florida Youth Tobacco Survey (FYTS). Web.