[PNWHEALTH] Evidence Based Health Education
margo at pnwhealth.com
Fri Feb 27 07:20:27 PST 2009
I've been way too quiet lately. I'm recovering from foot surgery, and it
isn't going well. I've had to back off on the PNW Job Bank; so I apologize,
but that is idle. I do try to keep up on posts from HEDIR (health education
listserv from Southern Illinois University) and the Social Marketing
Listserv from Georgetown. This post from HEDIR captured my attention this
morning. The initial discussion was about using Vision Goggles in peer
education on a college campus. Please respond directly to Steve if you have
questions/concerns. Thanks. Margo
"I should preface this in advance by saying that this post is not meant to
hurt or attack anyone. I do have some strong feelings about this and in
part, I'm just venting (as I sometimes need to do).
I have to agree wholeheartedly with Mark. There "may" be a way to
incorporate beer goggles (fatal vision goggles - now there's a lovely term)
into an appropriate education/prevention program, but I have not seen it
done in my 30+ years in college health. Like too many "gimmicks" they end up
as a source of "entertainment," not education. These "fancy scare tactics"
are used also in part because it gets students to attend a program (no easy
task). Every time I have observed them in use by well-meaning police or
residence hall staff - things quickly degenerate to where it becomes a joke
(How well can I do the behaviors at higher and higher BAC levels).
In addition, I believe that the degree of incapacitation that beer goggles
portray is all too often over-stated, i.e., many drinkers will find that if
and when they drink to a given BAC (.08 for example) they never seem to
become as impaired as when they wear the .08 goggles (again, another
instance where our "ends justify the means" approach to health education).
When they realize that the beer goggles over-impaired them - do they then
reject all of the information they were given as being in error?
I believe that we do our profession a disservice by continuing to do any
intervention (other than pilots) where there is a lack of credible evidence
of effectiveness. To paraphrase my colleague, Michael Haines, interventions
based on the four P's of precedence, preference, popularity or politics and
not on good data and research should be avoided.
The fairly recent phenomenon of relying on student learning objectives to
formulate campus health intervention plans is good movement toward
eliminating wasteful and ineffective health promotion efforts. We still have
a ways to go. I would love to be directed to any evidence that would
encourage me that using beer goggles can be an effective part of reducing
risky drinking - or even some demonstrated learning outcomes that were
performed later than the same night of the program.
Okay, I've had my rant. Thanks for reading. Now I'm going to bed - do others
have a different viewpoint? Why is there so little consensus on this issue?
P.S. Please do not let this response keep you from continued posting,
Jolene. We need more communication, not less.
Steve Lux, MS
Evans Field House 154
Division of Student Affairs
Northern Illinois University
DeKalb, IL 60115
slux at niu.edu
(815) 753-1120 fax
"When health is absent, wisdom cannot reveal itself, art cannot manifest,
strength cannot fight, wealth becomes useless, and intelligence cannot be
Herophilus, (350-280 BC) physician to Alexander the Great
Email: margo at pnwhealth.com
PNW SOPHE Job Bank: www.pnwhealth.com/jobbank.htm
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