Health Awareness Campaigns and Diagnosis Rates: Evidence from National Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Posted: 5 Apr 2011

See all articles by Grant Jacobsen

Grant Jacobsen

University of Oregon - School of Planning, Public Policy, and Management

Kathryn H. Jacobsen

George Mason University

Date Written: October 15, 2010

Abstract

Awareness campaigns are often used to encourage medical screening that allows for early detection of health problems, but much remains unknown about the effectiveness of these programs. This paper evaluates whether National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (NBCAM) has led to increased diagnosis of breast cancer. The analysis examines the number of diagnoses made in November (one month after NBCAM) during years before and after NBCAM was initiated. We find that from 1993 to 1995, the period when breast cancer advocacy was expanding rapidly into a nationwide movement, NBCAM led to an increase in the number of November diagnoses. During earlier periods (from the mid-1980s to the early-1990s), when breast cancer advocacy was still a nascent grassroots movement, and in later periods, when breast cancer advocacy had become a well-established nationwide cause, there is little evidence that October NBCAM events had an effect on November diagnoses.

Keywords: Breast Cancer, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Awareness Campaign, Health Campaign, Diagnosis, Mammography, Screening

JEL Classification: I1, I12

Suggested Citation

Jacobsen, Grant and Jacobsen, Kathryn H., Health Awareness Campaigns and Diagnosis Rates: Evidence from National Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October 15, 2010). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1802720

Grant Jacobsen (Contact Author)

University of Oregon - School of Planning, Public Policy, and Management ( email )

1280 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403
United States

Kathryn H. Jacobsen

George Mason University ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States

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