Community involvement and awareness raising for better development, access and use of medicines: The transformative potential of photovoice

Lourdes Cantarero-Arévalo, Amy Werremeyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Photovoice is a qualitative research method where people, through images (photography, drawings or paintings), capture, represent, and communicate their experiences and perspectives about issues that are important to them with the final goal of raising awareness and triggering social change. Photovoice is informed by participatory action research approaches, feminist theory, Paulo Freire's critical pedagogy, and the theory of photography. Developed with the explicit purpose of gathering voices to advocate for structural social change in the early 1990s, the application of Photovoice in projects related to social pharmacy research started approximately 15 year later. The first Photovoice studies within social pharmacy aimed at understanding patients' experiences with their medications. Photovoice has also been integrated in interventions mainly focused on enhancing adherence to pharmacological treatments. There is still, however, room to fully unfold the empowering and emancipatory potential of Photovoice within social pharmacy research. This article briefly presents the theories underlying Photovoice, a guide for its appropriate methodological and ethical implementation, and with the aim to serve as inspiration for future social pharmacy research projects, it also includes three previously published studies that used Photovoice to understand, raise awareness and trigger social change to facilitate better lives when in need of pharmacological treatments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2062-2069
Number of pages8
JournalResearch in Social and Administrative Pharmacy
Volume17
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Advocacy
  • Patient's perspective
  • Pharmacy practice
  • Photography
  • Photovoice
  • Social change
  • Social pharmacy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacy
  • Pharmaceutical Science

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