December 2021 JEH: Direct From CDC/Environmental Health Services
Journal of Environmental Health (Volume 84, Number 5)
Editor's Note: The National Environmental Health Association strives to provide up-to-date and relevant information on environmental health and to build partnerships in the profession. In pursuit of these goals, we feature a column on environmental health services from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in every issue of the Journal.
In these columns, authors from CDC's Water, Food, and Environmental Health Services Branch, as well as guest authors, will share insights and information about environmental health programs, trends, issues, and resources. The conclusions of these columns are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position of CDC.
Tools to Help You Write Clear Environmental Health Messages
Traci Augustosky, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Brandon Fastman, PhD, Powell Strategies
Environmental health communicators must be able to disseminate scientifically accurate, evidence-based information in language that their audiences can easily understand and act on. This responsibility is doubly true in today’s media environment where public health practitioners face competition from sources of misinformation that have access to the megaphones of social media platforms. To help public health communicators craft clear messages, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) created two key resources: the CDC Clear Communication Index and the Everyday Words for Public Health Communication.
The National Center for Environmental Health/Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry has augmented these resources with two more that are tailored to environmental health professionals. These resources are the Clear Writing Assessment and the Environmental Health Thesaurus. In this month’s column, the authors will explain how these tools were developed and illustrate how they can be applied to strengthen environmental health communication.