Both sides of the debate are utilizing highly potent words: “government takeover,” “rationed medicine,” and “ticking time bomb.” Now, with little chance of movement until after the recess, politicians and stakeholders on both sides of the aisle have the month of August to continue stoking the heat on the healthcare reform debate.
As public relations professionals, we understand the importance of using language to drive awareness, change perceptions and influence behavior. Words – beyond their denotations – are the most basic of the tools we use.
Many in life sciences community will rely on the thorough review process of legal, medical and regulatory representatives to tone down or strengthen language as appropriate. However, with the knowledge that comes from being a healthcare public relations professional, I believe we have a duty to communicate with honesty in all writing, before it even gets to our clients’ desks.
Words carry weight. Acknowledge your influence, and use them responsibly.