The social amplification of risk and the hazard sequence

The October 1995 oral contraceptive pill scare

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Abstract

Hazard notifications routinely occur as part of the identification or management of a hazard. It is argued that a series of such notifications - a hazard sequence - may affect public responses to future notifications about that hazard and also that hazard sequences can help explain patterns of risk amplification, particularly how a risk becomes normalised. Exploration of the hazard sequence also means exploring hazard templates: frameworks through which people make sense of risk information across the lifetime of the hazard. Events surrounding the 1995 oral contraceptive 'pill scare' are used to illustrate the way in which a hazard sequence might operate.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)301-313
JournalHealth Risk & Society
Volume5
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2003

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