Digital Content Strategy: Being Agile When Communicating About Health (HLOL #172)

Leigh Curtin-Wilding, MSc is a content author, strategist, storyteller, and marketing communication professional. Her passion is making health information usable and meaningful for today’s consumer. Leigh serves as director of, and teaches at, Boston University’s online graduate program in Health Communication.

In this podcast, Leigh Curtin-Wilding talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • Being agile in health communication, prepared to adapt content to changing conditions, policies, and formats.
  • Understanding the user’s journey that includes actions, emotions, and how they access information.
  • Tips for effective communication including understanding the audience, chunking information, having short bursts of information, and using visuals and good design.

More Ways to Learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 34, 35, 36, 39

Read the transcript of this podcast. 

Deconstructing Stigma: A Very Public Multimedia Project about Mental Illness (HLOL #162)

Adriana Bobinchock is the senior director of Public Affairs and Communications for McLean Hospital, the largest psychiatric affiliate of Harvard Medical School. Bobinchock has worked in healthcare communications for more than 17 years and has a keen interest in educating the public about mental health. In 2016, Bobinchock along with her colleague Scott O’Brien, spearheaded McLean’s national public awareness campaign Deconstructing Stigma: A Change in Thought Can Change a Life.

In this podcast, Adriana Bobinchock talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • Deconstructing Stigma. What this project is, why it got started, who’s involved, and how it is helping educate the public about mental illness.
  • Ways this project uses photos, personal stories, statistics, social media, partnerships, and public space to convey a difficult, yet important, health message.
  • Suggestions about ways to create innovative, meaningful educational projects of your own.

More ways to learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 13, 19, 31, 38, 40

Read the transcript of this podcast.

Creating Videos of Patients’ Stories to Inspire and Remind Caregivers About Why Their Work Matters (HLOL #143)

2015 headshotChad Brough is Executive Director of the Office of Patient Experience at Cone Health in Greensboro, NC. While his accomplishments are many, Chad succinctly summarized his work in words he uses as his Twitter profile, “Chad Brough stands for healthcare that is more compassionate, less complicated, more affordable, and more predictable.”

In this podcast, Chad Brough talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • How patients’ stories help inspire caregivers about the importance of caregiving.
  • Why patients so willingly share their stories as a way to give back and say thanks.
  • Good, better, and best ways to help tell patients’ stories. From reading heartfelt letters, to sharing family photos, to producing videotaped stories.
  • Recommendations, lessons learned, and stories about storytelling in healthcare.

More Ways to Learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 4, 13, 27, 31, 33, 40, 41.

Read the written podcast transcript.

Ethnodrama: Conveying Health Concepts in Culturally Relevant Ways (HLOL #140)

Anita Woodley - Headshot Black & WhiteAnita Woodley is an award-winning actress, playwright, producer, musician, poet, and journalist. She also is a certified HIV counselor and advocate for many healthcare initiatives. One powerful way that Anita communicates is with ethnodramas—non-traditional theatrical performances based on ethnographic research data used to educate, promote, and prevent harmful practices to overall health.

In this podcast, Helen Osborne talks with Anita Woodley about:

  • How theatric performances can communicate health messages in meaningful, memorable, and culturally relevant ways.
  • Examples of using characters, language, and laughter to teach about health.
  • Woodley’s suggestions about ways everyone (not just actors) can be authentic and inform those we care about, and care for.

More Ways to Learn

  • Anita Woodley: Award-winning Entertainer, Journalist, and Visual Artist. Read about, watch, and learn much more at Anitawoodley.com
  • Strang F, Gonzalez S, 100 Perks of Having Cancer plus 100 Health Tips For Surviving It. At http://100perksofhavingcancer.com

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 13, 14, 18, 31, 40, 42.

Read the written podcast transcript.

Comics and Medicine: That’s Health Literacy, Too. (HLOL #110)

MKMK Czerwiec is a nurse who makes comics. MK has a Masters degree in medical humanities from Northwestern University, where she developed and teaches a seminar to medical students called “Drawing Medicine.” With Ian Williams, a doctor in the UK who also makes comics, MK co-runs GraphicMedicine.org, a website that looks at the intersection between comics and the discourse of medicine.

In this podcast, MK Czerwiec talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • How comics use sequential art to tell about health, illness, and medicine.
  • Why comics are effective and how they transcend differences in culture, language, and educational level.
  • What listeners can do to find, create, use, and learn more about comics in medicine.

Ways to Learn More:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 14, 17, 31, 32, 38, 40.

Read a transcript of this podcast.

Poetry and Other Artful Ways to Communicate Health Messages (HLOL #99)

EM Authors LiveElspeth Murray is a Scottish poet whose background is in cultural anthropology, health promotion, public health policy and patient involvement in cancer care. She also works with the Puppet State Theatre Company on their award-winning puppetry and storytelling production, “The Man Who Planted Trees” that has toured internationally for many years.

In this podcast, Elspeth Murray talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • “This is Bad Enough.” Murray reads her poem about why health communication is hard, along with ways to make it easier.
  • Using the arts to engage, entertain, and educate audiences.
  • Creating compelling health messages with poetry, whiteboard animation, videos, storytelling, and other artful ways.

More ways to learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 11, 28, 32, 40, 41.

Read a transcript of this podcast.

Power of Stories in Patient and Family-Centered Care (HLOL #72)

Marlene Fondrick helps patients share their stories as a way to advance the practice of patient and family-centered care. This work builds on Fondrick’s clinical and administrative experiences as a nurse and hospital vice president. Fondrick adds to this mix her perspective as grandmother of a young child who was diagnosed with cancer.

In this podcast, Marlene Fondrick talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • The power of stories in patient- and family-centered care.
  • Examples of real-life stories that have made a difference in patient care.
  • Ways to help patients share their stories, including the most important questions to ask.

More Ways to Learn:

  • Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care. Available at http://www.ipfcc.org/
  • Crocker L, Johnson B, Privileged Presence: Personal Stories of Connection in Health Care. 2006, Bull Publishing Company.
  • Osborne, H. “In Other Words…Tool of Change: Telling and Listening to Stories,” On Call, October 16, 2008. Available at http://healthliteracy.com/telling-stories

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 11, 31, 41.

Read a transcript of this podcast.

Reach Out and Read: Encouraging Literacy and Health Literacy from Childhood On (HLOL #52)

Perri Klass, MD, FAAP, is the National Medical Director of Reach Out and Read—a non-profit initiative that promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms nationwide. Reach Out and Read gives new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud.

Beyond her work with Reach Out and Read, Dr. Klass is a professor of journalism and pediatrics at New York University and also works at Bellevue Hospital Clinic. She served on the Health Literacy Project Advisory Committee of the American Academy of Pediatrics. In addition, Dr. Klass is a widely published author of both fiction and nonfiction, who writes frequently about topics concerning children and health. She also writes about her ongoing interest in knitting.

In this podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • Reach Out and Read, a program to encourage early literacy and promote reading aloud.
  • Why it is important to address literacy in well-child pediatric visits.
  • The intersection of literacy, learning, and health from childhood on.

More Ways to Learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 17, 21, 27, 31, 40.

Health Communication from a Native American Perspective (HLOL #44)

Linda Burhansstipanov MSPH, DrPH (or as many people say, “Linda B”) is of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. She has worked in public health for many years, taught at several universities, and is involved with a lot of research including the NIH funded projects, “Native American Cancer Education for Survivors” and “Native Navigators and the Cancer Continuum.”

Linda B created and oversees the Native American Cancer Research website which is used not only by Native Americans but also by people from around the world. Linda is the author of nearly 100 peer-reviewed articles and advises many healthcare organizations about issues affecting Native Americans.

In this podcast, Linda B talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • Native American concerns related to health and cancer
  • Communication strategies including stories, metaphors, and pictures
  • Creating a website with a strong cultural identity
  • Lessons learned that health communicators can use with all audiences

More Ways to Learn:

  • You can email Linda B at LindaB@natamcancer.net. But please know that it may take her a few days to reply as she may be in areas with no Internet connection.
  • Native American Cancer Research Website, available at www.natamcancer.org

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 6, 18, 25, 27, 31, 32.

Folktales as Tools for Healing (HLOL #37)

Wendy Welch PhD is a folklorist and storyteller. She is on the faculty of the Healthy Appalachia Institute and teaches Cultural Studies at the University of Virginia’s College at Wise. Wendy has served on the Board of Directors for the US National Storytelling Network and was on the National Storytelling Board in the UK.

Beyond these many professional achievements, Wendy co-owns a used bookstore, tours as storytelling performer and instructor, and is an accomplished craftswoman. In this podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about using folktales, personal stories, fairy tales, and urban legends as tools for healing. Topics include:

  • Using folktales with people of all ages, abilities, and cultures.
  • Using folktales to motivate behavior change.
  • Using folktales in community based participatory research.
  • Using folktales in your practice and getting more involved with research.

More ways to learn:

  • Wendy Welch welcomes hearing your story about using folktales as tools for healing. You can email Wendy directly at wow6n@uvawise.edu
  • Healthy Appalachia Institute, http://www.uvawise.edu/health
  • National Storytelling Network, http://www.storynet.org
  • Osborne, H “In other words…Tools of change: Telling and listening to stories,” On Call magazine, October 16, 2008. Available at http://www.healthliteracy.com/article.asp?PageID=8051
  • Pantheon and Dolch are publishing houses that do and did (respectively) collections of fairy tales and multicultural folktales. Welch advises that if you find collections from either publisher (at a second-hand bookstore, perhaps) then you can rest assured they will be good.

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 31.

The Healing Power of Humor & Play (HLOL #36)

Izzy Gesell M.ED, CSP knows a lot about the healing power of humor and play. With degrees in psychology and education, Izzy brings energy and joy to all he does – whether he’s working as a special education teacher, a stand-up comic, or an organizational consultant.

Izzy not only is funny in his own right but also teaches others how to use humor and play. He is the author of numerous publications including Playing Along: Group Learning Activities Borrowed From Improvisation Theater and Cancer and the Healing Power of Play.

In this podcast, Izzy talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • How humor & play can add positive energy, build bridges, and create bonds.
  • Knowing when, and when not, to use humor in health communication.
  • Being humorous, even when you think you’re not funny.

More Ways to Learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 14, 40, 41.

Teachable Moments: Using Celebrity to Teach About Health (HLOL #32)

Michele Berman, MD is a pediatrician who has practiced in hospitals and pediatric centers across the United States. She also has authored numerous articles, many of them about the practical side of parenting.  But now Dr. Berman is taking on a new role as Managing Partner and Chief Medical Officer of the website, Celebrity Diagnosis.

In this podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about ways to make the most of teachable moments and use celebrity news to teach about health.

Topics include:

  • How “teachable moments” provide context for new learning
  • Why and how this website connects celebrity with health
  • Lessons learned that all health communicators can apply

More Ways to Learn:

bestshoesmeme