Public health communication technology: A case study in Michigan long-term care settings

Sarah J. Swierenga*, Lori A. Post, Jounghwa Choi, Constantinos K. Coursaris

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Research focusing on a technology based approach to health communication has primarily been limited to the study of individuals rather than communities even in the midst of a booming technology industry and subsequent research. The Information Communication Technology (ICT) which assists management of health or government agencies has rarely been discussed in the context of health communication at the organizational-societal level. This paper focuses on how ICT implemented at the state level impacts public health effectiveness and efficiency. Michigan is one of seven states that received funding from the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to participate in the legislatively mandated background check pilot program intended to prevent abuse. Participation in this initiative will influence future United States federal policy designed to provide optimum services and support for the nation's most vulnerable citizens. Michigan's Workforce Background Check (MWBC) system will serve as a model for other states that must implement a standardized, multiple- system process of background checks to prevent unfit persons from gaining access to vulnerable populations. The MWBC project is examined as a case study that illustrates how ICT is essential for public health management by enhancing organizational level communication practices. The contribution of the MWBC project can be summarized in the following dimensions: (1) improving communication among organizations, (2) serving as an interactive decision support system, and (3) providing a better tool for public health practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)115-124
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2007


  • Case Study
  • Information Communication Technology
  • Long-Term Care
  • Public Health Communication
  • Usability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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