Communicating Complex Health Messages in a Complex World (HLOL #202)

Glen Nowak Ph.D. is Professor of Advertising and Public Relations at the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication and Director of the Grady College Center for Health and Risk Communication. Nowak has provided senior-level leadership on communicating about topics that include infectious disease, public health risks, and immunizations for government agencies, public health programs, and research projects. These include the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, and the International Association of National Public Health Institutes. Glen Nowak has also authored, or co-authored. numerous peer-review journal articles.

In this podcast, Glen Nowak talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • Why it so complicated to communicate public health messages. With issues that include uncertainty, competing priorities, and ever-changing recommendations.
  • Ways to address myths, hype, and hearsay that might conflict with core messages.
  • How to learn about and address the interests and needs of your audience. In other words, “Seeing the world through their eyes.”

More ways to learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Especially relevant to this podcast is Chapter 13, “Talking with Patients About What They Learn from the Media.”

Read the transcript of this podcast

Children, Media, and Positive Health Messaging (HLOL #147)

Dina and friendDina Borzekowski, Ed.D., is the Interim Director of the University of Maryland’s Center for Health Literacy. She also is an international expert on children, media, and health. Borzekowski’s research explores how children and adolescents use media as well as media’s effect on the health and well-being of youth.

In this podcast, Dina Borzekowski talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • The intersection of children everywhere with media in its many formats.
  • Research about positive and negative effects of media on children of all ages.
  • Recommendations for developing media messages that can improve children’s lives.
  • Ways professionals and parents can help when it comes to media messages.

More Ways to Learn:

  • Borzekkowski DLG, Cohen JE, “International Reach of Tobacco Marketing Among Young Children,” Pediatrics, Volume 132, Number 4, October 2013.
  • Borzekowski, DLG, “Considering Children and Health Literacy: A Theoretical Approach,” Pediatrics 2009;124;S282.
  • Borzekowski is happy to chat about health literacy or children, media, and health. Feel free to contact her by email at dborzeko@umd.edu

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 13, 17, 40.

Read the transcript for this podcast. 

Partnering with the Media to Promote Health Literacy (HLOL #127)

CHENEY_HLMChristopher Cheney is a professional journalist. He began as a staff writer at a community newspaper about 20 years ago and has worked in multiple newsroom capacities ever since. Cheney’s experience not only includes print and online media but also producing content for radio and television. Cheney now is an editor and health plan columnist at a multimedia healthcare journalism outfit, HealthLeaders Media.

In this podcast, Helen Osborne talks with Christopher Cheney about:

  • How media can broaden the reach of your health literacy message.
  • Multi-media today. Options to direct content to your specific audience.
  • Benefits, risks, and ways to create trusted partnerships with journalists.

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, 36, 40.

Read the written transcript.

Helping Others Understand Health Messages (HLOL #56)

Lisa M. Schwartz, MD, M.S., and Steven Woloshin, MD, MS, are general internists at the White River Junction Veterans Administration Medical Center in Vermont. They also are professors of medicine, and community and family medicine, at Dartmouth Medical School in New Hampshire.

Together, they are working to address two important barriers to health communication: 1) many patients and providers are limited in their ability to interpret medical data, and 2) health messages are often exaggerated or incomplete. Dr. Schwartz and Dr. Woloshin have written extensively on this topic and are co-authors of several books including Know Your Chances: Understanding Health Statistics and Overdiagnosed.

In this podcast, they talk with Helen Osborne about:

  • Health statistics, health messages, and health claims. Helping people make sense of what they hear on the news, see on TV, and read in the ads.
  • Three questions to help others better understand health messages.
  • Ways to communicate complicated health messages more simply and clearly.

More Ways to Learn:

  • Woloshin S, Schwartz LM, Welch HG, Know Your Chances: Understanding Health Statistics. University of California Press, 2008. (The book can be downloaded for free from http://www.jameslindlibrary.org/testing-treatments.html
  • Welch HG, Schwartz LM, Woloshin, Overdiagnosed. Beacon Press, 2011.
  • S Woloshin, LM Schwartz, BS Kramer. “Promoting health skepticism in the news: Helping journalists get it right,” J Natl Cancer Institute 101(23): 1596–1599.
  • “Healthy Skepticism,” White River Junction Outcomes Group. Available at http://www.vaoutcomes.org/washpost.php
  • Osborne H, “In Other Words…Working With Numbers,” On Call magazine, June/July 2004. Available at http://healthliteracy.com/article.asp?PageID=3745

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 8, 13, 26.

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