In A New Way to Talk About the Social Determinants of Health, the Portfolio shares a way to create more compelling, effective and persuasive messages that resonate across the political spectrum.Health begins where we live, learn, work and play. We create new opportunities for better health by investing in health where it starts—in our homes,schools and jobs.

This report was developed with three primary aims in mind:
  • To develop a small set of values-based, emotionally compelling narratives about why the social context (and associated disparities) matters and why both decision elites and ordinary citizens should care about it;
  • To identify words and phrases that resonate with both decision elites and ordinary citizens and to identify words, phrases, and concepts to avoid that render them less likely to understand or care about social determinants or health disparities; and
  • To develop a small number of proxy statements, “catch phrases,” or “taglines” that capture the complex construct of social determinants in a way that is understandable and resonant to people other than experts in public health.

A New Way to Talk About the Social Determinants of Health, includes:

  • A Foreword by Jane Lowe: Why We Need a Better Way to Talk About the Social Determinants of Health
  • Peeling the Onion: How We Found a Better Way to Talk About the Social Determinants of Health
  • Choosing Words: Best Practices in the Language and Framing of Social Determinants of Health
  • Finding One Fact to Fight Fiction: The Use of Data and Information to Support—Not Make—Your Case
  • Thinking in Pictures: The Deep Metaphors That Drive How Politicians See Health Disparities (by Elizabeth Carger)
  • Changing Our Frame of Mind: The Role of the Mind, Brain and Emotion in Developing Messages (by Drew Westen, Ph.D.)