Communicating with People Who Have Cancer (HLOL #8)

This Health Literacy Out Loud podcast is like a patchwork quilt, pieced together with many tips and strategies for communicating effectively with people who have cancer. I recorded it at a meeting of Virginia’s Cancer Planning Action Coalition (CPAC) which met in Charlottesville, VA on November 20, 2008. I had the honor of being a keynote speaker at this conference.

In this podcast, Helen Osborne talks with several CPAC conference participants about their tips for good health communication:

  • Sharon Dwyer talks about the power of stories. She highlights how stories can help remove fear, motivate people, and provide support and human connection.
  • Susan Seidler speaks about reaching out to seniors in the community. She also highlights ways to improve communication with seniors, in person and in print.
  • Michael Pyles, PhD highlights the value of community partnerships, cultural diversity, and how listening is key to action.
  • Melanie Dempsey BS, RT(R)(T), CMD discusses the importance of teamwork and how each professional helps with education. She also talks about how stress affects patients’ understanding
  • Laura Humbertson MS discusses how information and resources help empower patients.
  • Donna Moore RN speaks about her work as a Nurse Navigator. This includes listening to patient’s fears, finding and knocking down barriers, and giving patients hope.

More ways to learn:

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Jan Potter Talks about Using Humor & Graphics to Convey Health Information (HLOL #5)

Jan Potter is a communications specialist with the Partnership for Health and Accountability, a division of the Georgia Hospital Association. Among her many accomplishments, Jan designed a bulletin board system on a variety of health education topics. These bulletin boards are free for others to download and use. In addition, Jan works on a wide range of projects, newsletters, and websites. Her most recent is an online toolkit to promote tobacco-free hospital campuses in Georgia.

In this Health Literacy Out Loud podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about using humor and graphics to convey health information. Topics include:

  • How bulletin boards help draw attention to important health information
  • Ways to use color, humor, and graphics to engage and empower patients
  • Tips to create your own bulletin boards or build on what others have done

More ways to learn:

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Lisa Bernstein Talks about Patient-Centered Communication (HLOL #4)

Lisa Bernstein is Executive Director and Co-founder of the What to Expect Foundation based in New York City. This non-profit organization takes its name and leadership from the best selling pregnancy guide What to Expect When You’re Expecting. The Foundation helps low-income, at-risk parents expect healthier pregnancies, safer deliveries, and happier babies. One of Lisa’s many responsibilities is directing the “Baby Basics Prenatal Health Literacy Program.”

In this Health Literacy Out Loud Podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about using patient-centered communication to reach communities. Topics include:

  • Baby Basics: Why this easy-to-read pregnancy guide was created and ways to use it in practice.
  • How lessons learned from Baby Basics apply to many health situations including teaching about diabetes, smoking cessation and hypertension.
  • Ways to evaluate and use simply-written materials in context of a person’s life and community.

More ways to learn:

  • What to Expect Foundation website includes information about the book Baby Basics. Available at http://www.whattoexpect.org. You can reach Lisa Bernstein by email at lisab@whattoexpect.org
  • Health Literacy Out Loud (audio CD). Helen Osborne talks with Lisa Bernstein about Creating and Using Excellent Written Materials. Available at http://www.healthliteracy.com/buy.asp?PageID=3672
  • Osborne, H. “In Other Words… Helping Patients Ask Questions.” On Call Magazine, November/December 2006. This article includes quotes from Lisa Bernstein. Available at http://www.healthliteracy.com/article.asp?PageID=5179
  • Osborne H, 2004. Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett. To order, go to most online bookstores or the publisher’s website at http://www.jbpub.com/catalog/0763745502/
  • Zarcadoolas C, Pleasant AF, Greer DS, 2006. Advancing Health Literacy: A Framework for Understanding and Action. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

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Mache Seibel Talks about Using Music and Song (HLOL #2)

Helen Osborne talks with Mache Seibel about using music and song

Mache Seibel, MD educates people about health and wellness. Some days his tools are a stethoscope and prescription pad. Other days, they include a microphone and guitar. Dr. Seibel is a practicing physician and professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, MA. He also is known as “Doc Rock,” a composer and performer who records music with health messages as part of his business, HealthRock.

In this Health Literacy Out Loud podcast, Dr. Seibel talks with Helen Osborne about using music and song as a tool of health communication. Topics include:

  • How music and song stimulates the brain
  • Ways clinicians (even non-musical ones) can use music
  • Songs with health messages for all people of all ages
  • Music as entertainment, education, and call to action

Mache Seibel sings most of the songs on this Health Literacy Out Loud podcast. His daughter, Sherry Seibel, sings “Mirror Set Me Free.” To hear more or order the full versions, please go to the HealthRock website at http://www.healthrock.com

More ways to learn:

  • Huron, D. “Science & Music: Lost in music.” Nature 453; 22 May 2008.
  • Osborne, H. “In Other Words…Using Music and Song as Tools of Health Communication.” On Call Magazine, March 24, 2008. Available at http://www.boston.com/jobs/healthcare/oncall/ and http://www.healthliteracy.com/article.asp?PageID=719
  • Peterson DA, Thaut MH. “Music increases frontal EEG coherence during verbal learning.” 2006; 412(3):217-221. Neuroscience Letters
  • Seibel MM. “Health through music and song” Sexuality Reproduction & Menopause. 2006; 4(2):46-47.

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