Hollywood, Health & Society (HH&S) is a unique partnership between the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The California Endowment, the Barr Foundation, the National Cancer Institute (NCI), the Health Resources and Services Administration's Division of Transplantation, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. HH&S provides entertainment industry professionals with accurate and timely information for health storylines. Based at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, HH&S is a comprehensive resource for writers, producers and others in search of credible information on a wide range of public health topics.
Rather than focusing on single issues, the program covers everything from chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes; to infectious diseases like influenza, HIV and TB; to environmental health hazards, bioterrorism preparedness, violence, worker safety issues and the whole gamut of adolescent health issues. The program combines the public health expertise of the CDC and other partner organizations with the entertainment industry knowledge and outreach capabilities of the USC Annenberg School's Norman Lear Center.
Hollywood, Health & Society is comprised of professional staff, an advisory board, faculty consultants and graduate student researchers with experience in entertainment, media, health communications, behavioral science and health care delivery. The program has direct access to thousands of health and medical experts around the world, including those who work at the CDC headquarters in Atlanta, the NCI headquarters in Bethesda, MD, and CDC field offices in the United States and abroad, and those who work at partner organizations, i.e. state and county health departments, other federal agencies, nonprofit health agencies and universities with academic medical centers and public health programs, like USC, UCLA, Harvard University and Johns Hopkins University.
Martin Kaplan, Director of the Norman Lear Center, is program executive for Hollywood, Health & Society and former associate dean at the USC Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism, as well as a former Disney executive and writer-producer. Sandra de Castro Buffington, formerly Vice President of the Centre for Development and Population Activities (CEDPA) and known for her award-winning work in global health and social transformation, is director of Hollywood, Health & Society. The advisory board is co-chaired by Neal Baer, M.D., executive producer of A Gifted Man and Chris Keyser, president of the Writers Guild of America, West.
Hollywood, Health & Society offers a wide range of free services tailored to entertainment industry needs. The goal is to provide credible information, reliable experts and engaging case examples, and to collaborate with communication researchers and entertainment industry executives to study the content and impact of TV health storylines.