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Internet-based Tobacco Control Network
Institution: Center for Communications, Health and the Environment
the Institute for Clinical and Experimental Medicine
National Institute of Public Health
Implementation Date: Jun 01, 1998
Summary: When traditional media, such as television and newspapers refused to publish anti-tobacco information, an Internet-based demonstration project was used to reach decision-makers and the general public.

The World Bank InfoDev programme enabled the United States-based Center for Communications, Health and the Environment and its two Czech partners — the Institute for Clinical and Experimental Medicine and the National Institute of Public Health ¬— to launch an Internet-based communications programme aimed at tobacco control in the Czech Republic.

The Tobacco Control Network uses ICT as a basis for communication and training of professionals in the field of health and for awareness-raising.

The project shows how specialized knowledge of awareness-raising campaigns can be transferred from one country to another by using relatively simple ICTs: e-mail and the Internet.
Impact: Initially, the goal was to build up a media advocacy programme, forming an Internet-based network comprising health professionals from the Czech District Hygiene Stations, NGOs focused on the prevention of heart disease and other professionals concerned with tobacco control.

The outcome of the different activities was even more comprehensive, however, as illustrated by the following:

  • A self-sustaining Tobacco-control Training and Communications Programme promoting excellence in communications technology, and regional, national and international linkage and outreach;
  • Targeted information technology and skills transfer workshops and a Tobacco-Control Conference held at the project hub and in various districts of the Czech Republic;
  • A demand-based resource service on tobacco control equipped with high-quality resource materials for the Internet and computerized database and research capabilities that cater to requests;
  • Development of a comprehensive data collection system to support programme operations and pre- and post-programme surveys of knowledge, skills and applications among the participating organizations to assess programme impact;
  • Continuous electronic media tobacco-control campaigns, which increasingly engage more groups in Czech society in tobacco control;
  • A web site with an electronic bulletin board, resource directory and "What's New" listing (See the homepage on the web site of the National Institute of Public Health for up-to-date reports on current events.);
  • Monthly electronic bulletins with nationwide and international circulation; and
  • The establishment of an advocacy NGO dedicated to reducing tobacco use and the prevention of cardiovascular disease: the Czech Heart Association.
Source: : Center for Communications, Health and the Environment
Project Home URL: http://www.ceche.org/programs/cze-int/czechtcc.htm
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