Evaluating the effect of a television public service announcement about epilepsy
Health Education Research
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Public service announcements (PSAs) are non-commercial advertisements aiming to improve knowledge, attitudes and/or behavior. No evaluations of epilepsy PSAs exist. This study sought to evaluate a televised PSA showing first aid for a seizure. A multilevel regression analysis was used to determine the effect of the PSA on epilepsy knowledge and attitudes taking into account school-level clustering as well as individual-level variables, including socioeconomic status, gender, language and familiarity with epilepsy. Of the 803 randomly selected Grade 5 (9-11 years) students, 406 (51%) had seen the epilepsy PSA. Those who saw the PSA scored significantly higher on knowledge (P < 0.001) and had more positive attitudes (P < 0.001) about epilepsy. Those who saw the PSA had even greater knowledge about epilepsy 1 month later, even though the PSA was no longer being televised. Having viewed, the PSA continued to be associated with higher knowledge and more positive attitudes independent of the effects of a school-based epilepsy education program. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.