Talking About Health

-  Why Communication Matters

  By Roxanne Parrott


Talking About Health Book Cover


Welcome to



Dr Parrott


Thanks for visiting this site. The discussions here focus on why communicating about health can make a difference in our health and our quality of life.

I became interested in answering the “why” question more than two decades ago. I was completing a project for an undergraduate course in technical writing. I had to write a technical report, and my brother-in-law was working for a health care organization that needed such a report. I learned to conduct a patient chart audit. The goal was to look at the charts of children being seen in the clinic where I was conducting the audit and see whether pediatric patients were getting the recommended preventive care…things like shots but also guidance about safety in the home or recommendations about language development, all depending on the age of the child. There was a schedule I followed for these recommendations and I made checks on sheets in boxes where something had been done. This then showed which ones hadn’t been done. It was a surprising number that weren’t being done, and I began to wonder why that might be the case.  

It wasn’t long before I decided to try to find some answers by going to graduate school and take a look at the situation. My thesis for my Masters degree explored exactly this issue. Why did parents stop bringing their children for well child exams after the two month check-up? I learned that it had a lot to do with communication. Parents wanted more communication about what their child should be doing, how “normal” their child’s development was when compared to some standard or average for the child’s age. But they didn’t ask for more discussion about this issue. They just stopped coming for well child visits.

The “Am I normal?” is a question that emerged time and again in the situations where I found myself trying to understand the role of communication for health. It is the first question I discuss in the book. Perhaps you have some other thoughts about this process that you will want to share in the blog. Please do. That and any other ideas that the book suggests you might have some experience with and some insights to share or some questions to explore. I look forward to hearing from you.     

Thanks for visiting this web site,

Roxanne Parrott






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