Office of Health Equity Webinar Series: Promoting Equity in Health Communications

Posted on by Hope L. Dennis, MPH

The Office of Health Equity (OHE) has launched a new webinar series that features presentations from OHE leaders, subject matter experts, and partners on topics that address emerging public health issues, health equity research, communication, and training, and showcase the power of partnerships in reducing health disparities and advancing health equity.

On January 24th, the Office of Health Equity (OHE) held the second partnership webinar to discuss Promoting Health Equity in Health Communications.  A total of 1269 people registered for the webinar and 664 unique participants joined the webinar to learn best practices for communicating about health equity as well as creating culturally relevant and accessible health communications materials. Topics covered during the webinar included information about health equity messaging, health equity communication principles, and the importance of accessible and inclusive communication. Dr. Isa Miles, Acting Associate Director for Communication in the Office of Health Equity, discussed the qualitative message testing the Communications Unit in OHE conducted with a contractor in 2022 to learn more about what people think, understand, and feel about health equity and to gain insights about effective message framing. Dr. Miles stated, “Communicating about health equity can be difficult. Health equity is a complex concept and messaging isn’t one-size-fits-all.” This set the stage for CDC and partners to share how they are using culturally relevant and inclusive communication principles to ensure health equity communication materials are available and accessible to everyone.

CDC’s Office of Communications Inclusive Communication and Training Team Lead, Sarah Bedrosian, spoke on the progress the agency has made with accessible communication and shared several resources on accessible and inclusive communication.

  • John Kemp, President & CEO of Lakeshore Foundation, spoke about how “Disability is an intersectional issue that affects all communities, including already marginalized communities, and has the power to unite diverse identities and lived experiences.” He went on to share, “Disability representation and inclusive physical activity leads to a society that respects and values the rights of all to have equitable access to health promotion opportunities.”
  • Pamela Roesch, Senior Health Equity Data Analyst, representing CDC Foundation spoke specifically on the Foundation’s data equity principles campaign and stated, “Through inclusive and multi-faceted communication campaigns, such as accessible resources and materials, mixed media campaigns and a focus on language—including plain language and translation—we are working to support a trusted, diverse and inclusive public health sector; expand capacity of community-based organizations; and integrate the public and private sectors to foster the wellbeing of all communities.”
  • Veronica Halloway, Executive Director at National Association of State Offices of Minority Health (NASOMH), talked about how “Equity in health communications goes beyond translating documents into multiple languages. [It includes] making sure that content is culturally and linguistically appropriate and relevant for the focus population and scripted in a language or format that is relevant and relatable [which] is sometimes missed if we don’t have the right voices at the table.”

Working with diverse communities is important to advancing health equity. Through the work and commitment of its partners, OHE is working to address the specific needs of groups that have been historically marginalized. Through partnership, we work together to ensure all people have the resources they need to have the opportunity to be as healthy as possible. OHE will continue to work with partners to further expand its reach and advance health equity. Subscribe to OHE’s email list for updates and information about events related to CDC’s Office of Health Equity, including future partner webinars. Note that you will receive an email to confirm your desire to be added to the subscription list and must complete this step to begin receiving email updates.

What are you doing to ensure culturally relevant and accessible health communication materials are available for your community?

For more resources on health equity communications and inclusive and accessible health communications materials:

 

Posted on by Hope L. Dennis, MPHTags , , ,

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Page last reviewed: February 21, 2024
Page last updated: February 21, 2024