A Story of Health Is a Tale of Innovation and Education

family dinner

A Story of Health is a multimedia e-book with continuing education credits that is designed to harness the power of storytelling to increase environmental health literacy with healthcare providers and health educators. In 2019, more than 10,000 people registered for this innovative continuing education experience.

Health professionals are a key audience for ATSDR. They recognize that patients may be suffering from preventable illnesses of environmental origin but often feel ill-equipped to educate individuals and families about risks associated with common exposures. A Story of Health seeks to fill this gap and help readers develop the competencies they need in order to help patients make informed choices, reduce health risks, and improve quality of life.

For A Story of Health, ATSDR and its partners created five fictional cases and described them in text, sidebars, pop-up boxes, illustrations, graphics, videos, and links to additional resources:

  • Asthma – “Brett’s story”
  • Developmental disabilities – “Amelia’s story”
  • Childhood leukemia – “Stephen’s story”
  • Reproductive health/fertility – “Toshio and Reiko’s story”
  • Cognitive decline/dementia – “Sam’s story.”

Key concepts embedded in the fictional stories include topics such as early origins of childhood and adult disease; mechanisms of action including inflammation, oxidative stress, insulin signaling, mutations, and signaling disruptions (including hormones); environmental justice and health disparities; and others as they are relevant to the individual stories.

To learn more about A Story of Health and download the e-book, visit https://wspehsu.ucsf.edu/main-resources/for-clinical-professionals/training/a-story-of-health-a-multi-media-ebook/external icon.

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Page last reviewed: December 8, 2020