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close this bookA Media Handbook for HIV Vaccine Trials for Africa (UNAIDS, 2001, 45 p.)
close this folderSection 5 - Identifying your public and partners
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentThe media, editorialists and opinion-shapers
View the documentThe scientific community
View the documentHIV/AIDS organizations
View the documentWomen's groups
View the documentStudent groups
View the documentHuman rights organizations
View the documentVaccine trial workers (primary and secondary)
View the documentReligious organizations
View the documentTraditional authorities
View the documentCommunity-based organizations (CBOs)
View the documentPolicy makers


The thought of 'vaccine trials' immediately evokes and provokes many behaviours and fears, largely irrational (though well intentioned) and mostly baseless, in the wider society. But beyond the fears of the general public, there may also be cynicism and distrust amongst media professionals whose opinions are germane to the success of the trial. Thus, the objectives in identifying the target public should be:

· to educate the general public, and in particular the media, on the facts about vaccines - their development, trial protocols, safety, risk factors, etc.;
· to achieve local and international public support for the vaccine trials;
· to create a favourable and supportive environment for the trials amongst key players and groups;
· to ensure sustenance of public support and goodwill throughout the trial and post-trial;
· to remove any wrong and misleading notions about the vaccine and the trials.

With these in mind, the following groups can be identified as primary targets in communicating about vaccine trials.