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Cancer Zappers by Aba: Creating An Online 'Vlog' to Educate the Public About Medical Physics

N Mensah-Brown1*, (1) University of Kansas Cancer Center, Lee's Summit, MO


(Sunday, 7/29/2018) 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Room: Exhibit Hall

Purpose: Explaining the field of Medical Physics to the public, is not a straightforward task. For this reason, it is essential to foster techniques to make our field real, approachable and understood to the layman.

Methods: Using a popular millennial idea known as vlogging (blog + video) the host presents educational and entertaining videos on a YouTube channel in which users are encouraged to subscribe. Viewers become familiar with the host and can follow along with the different story lines. The videos include Medical Physics illustrations in the categories of Radiation Therapy, Imaging and Health Physics. Morsels of fun facts are also provided to lighten the scientific atmosphere. A Facebook page has been created to promote these videos. A Twitter account has also been created to recruit more followers by way of inspirational tweets. To expand the education beyond friends and family, a Google Adware account has also been created to promote the videos.

Results: To date, most of the effort has been placed on creating good content and acquiring the resources necessary to gain momentum. Time is a major setback since the current setup involves a sole presenter (the author) who is also tasked with recording, editing, publishing and promoting the videos. This setup is necessary at first to ensure the cohesiveness of the vlogs, but will likely change over time with the growing subscriber base. The most recent vlogging rate has been 1 video every two weeks. The topics range from describing how a linear accelerator works, to breaking down the flow of procedures within the clinic, and to describing how much radiation one receives traveling between airports.

Conclusion: This technique for educating the public is effective since it reaches outside academic and clinical walls into a world of curious minds that also seek to be entertained.


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