Talking Health: A New Way to Communicate About Public Health

Released: September 2022 Length: 192 Pages Published By: Oxford University Press Price: $27.95
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Building support for public health — and improving our nation’s health — must begin with a better understanding of what public health is and why it matters. Talking Health: A New Way to Communicate About Public Health provides new research-based tools to help health professionals communicate more effectively about public health, strengthen community partnerships, and improve health outcomes. 

Informed by new research by the FrameWorks Institute and message testing by Hattaway Communications, Talking Health presents practical tools and insights from leading voices in health and communication.

  • “Winning Words” for communicating about public health. 
  • What themes and messages are most likely to resonate with the media, policymakers, and other audiences.  
  • How leaders in business, health care, education, and housing perceive public health and how communication can help overcome misperceptions and strengthen partnerships. 
  • How to make your communication stand out in a crowded media landscape.
  • Mark R. Miller, Vice President of Communications at the de Beaumont Foundation
  • Brian C. Castrucci, President and CEO of the de Beaumont Foundation
  • Rachel Locke, Former Senior Program Associate at the de Beaumont Foundation
  • Julia Haskins, Communications Associate at the de Beaumont Foundation
  • Grace A. Castillo, Former Program Associate at the de Beaumont Foundation
  • Rose Arce, Executive Producer, Soledad O’Brien Productions
  • Maureen Byrnes, MPA, Member of the Faculty, Milken Institute School of Public Health at The George Washington University
  • Karen DeSalvo, MD, MPH, MSc, Chief Health Officer, Google
  • Anna Duin, Former Content Marketing Strategist, mySidewalk
  • Doug Hattaway, President, Hattaway Communications
  • Ruth J. Katz, JD, MPH, Vice President and Executive Director, Health, Medicine & Society (HMS) Program at the Aspen Institute
  • Sarah Martin, PhD, Vice President of Health Solutions, mySidewalk
  • Nat Kendall-Taylor, PhD, CEO, FrameWorks Institute
  • Soledad O’Brien, Award-Winning Documentarian, Journalist, Speaker, Author, and Philanthropist and founder, Soledad O’Brien Productions
  • Moriah Robins, MPH, Senior Research Associate, de Beaumont Foundation
  • Eric Zimmermann, Vice President, Quadrant Strategies, and Former Director, Hattaway Communications

Media requests

To request a copy or an interview with an author, please send an email to media@debeaumont.org.

Published by

Oxford University Press

What people are saying about
Talking Health: A New Way to Communicate About Public Health

Georges C. Benjamin, MD, Executive Director, American Public Health Association

In public health, when we do our best work, nothing happens. However, it’s difficult to tell the story about a health risk avoided or mitigated, and because of that, many people don’t value public health’s work to protect and improve their health. The authors of Talking Health have provided proven strategies that, when used as intended, will help public health practitioners tell their story more effectively. It’s a must-read for anyone who needs to communicate public health’s value to both individuals and communities to get results.

Georges C. Benjamin, MD, Executive Director, American Public Health Association
Jay M. Bernhardt, PhD, MPH, Dean, Moody College of Communication, University of Texas at Austin, and former Director, National Center for Health Marketing, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The global COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated, once again, that health communication is at the core of effective public health. When health communication is done right, science has impact and lives are saved. When done wrong, the opposite occurs. This practical book describes the right way to do health communication — through audience research, strategic messaging and framing, and persuasive storytelling — to reach target audiences with key messages that promote and protect their health.

Jay M. Bernhardt, PhD, MPH, Dean, Moody College of Communication, University of Texas at Austin, and former Director, National Center for Health Marketing, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Judy Monroe, MD, President and CEO, CDC Foundation

Talking Health should be required reading for all public health professionals and health communicators. The way public health data are communicated is just as important as the science behind the message. This book gives practical methods and tools for how to communicate effectively.

Judy Monroe, MD, President and CEO, CDC Foundation

This timely, practical, and relevant book includes essential resources to communicate about the value of public health and to promote cross-sectoral partnerships. It’s a critical tool not only for public health professionals but also for community partners and leaders from other sectors to develop a shared understanding of ‘public health,’ see the connection with their work, and communicate about it.

Renata Schiavo, PhD, MA, CCL, Senior Lecturer, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health; Editor-In-Chief, Journal of Communication in Healthcare: Strategies, Media, and Engagement in Global Health; Founder and Board President, Health Equity Initiative; and Principal, Strategies for Equity and Communication Impact

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