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Editor's Note |

Mass Media Campaigns to Prevent Chronic Disease—A Powerful but Underused Tool

Rachel J. Stern, MD
JAMA Intern Med. 2015;175(11):1745. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2015.5546.
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In 2009, New York City embarked on a mass media campaign and policy initiative to highlight the link between obesity and “sugary beverages”—drinks containing more than 25 calories per 8 ounces (other than milk and 100% juice). This initiative led to a substantial reduction in sugary drink consumption among adults and adolescents.1 In this issue of JAMA Internal Medicine, Thomas A. Farley, the former New York City Health Commissioner who oversaw that program, highlights the value of mass media campaigns.2 Farley, now the chief executive officer of a nonprofit organization that supports mass media campaigns, discusses their role in promoting healthy behaviors such as smoking cessation, physical activity, and motor vehicle safety.3

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