Coverage of Avian Flu: A Case Study of Al Ahram Newspaper

Mirray Fahim


In the third week of February, 2006 the first case of Avian Flu was detected in Egypt. Al Ahram, a prominent, government-subsidized newspaper in Egypt, launched a campaign that aimed at both reporting cases of Avian Flu as
well as creating awareness of the disease. This study analyzes Avian Flu stories in Al Ahram by quantitatively measuring the number and type of stories to be found in the newspaper. Al Ahram was selected because of its wide circulation and high readership. The first week after the outset of Avian Flu in Egypt will be examined because it will add insight as to how the media covers spreading diseases at their initial stages. Articles will be classified under two different “frame” categories i.e. "health" and "socio-economic." Common themes or reoccurring ideas or facts that the newspaper stresses will also be identified and examined. In more general terms, this study serves to understand how Al Ahram "set" its agenda and how it intended to frame stories on this pressing topic as well as how a third world country like Egypt reports on pressing public health  issues, such as Avian Flu, during its initial stages.


Health, Flu, Al-Ahram Newspaper

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