About the Institute

How medical information is communicated has a profound impact on public health. Effective medical communication is imperative for the health and health literacy of populations. 

Surprisingly little research has been conducted to understand the flow of medical communication and how medical misinformation propagates. There is a lack of institutes or centers dedicated to research in these areas at Penn or elsewhere. The Penn Medical Communication Research Institute is a cross-cutting institute whose mission is to perform research to track the spread of medical information, understand its context, and perform trials to improve health literacy and trust in evidence-based medical information.

Penn has unique strengths in both medicine (School of Medicine and School of Nursing) and communication (Annenberg School for Communication) that are not present in combination in any other university or institution. In addition, other Penn institutes and centers, including the Leonard Davis Institute, the Institute for Biomedical Informatics, the Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics, the Center for Health Care Innovation, the Center for Digital Health, and the Center for Community Health Workers, as well as Public Relations and Marketing within the University of Pennsylvania Health System have much to contribute toward PMCRI's mission.