Creating Human Connection in Healthcare & Beyond with Derek McCracken

“Every conversation is a fresh performance. And even though we have skill sets we’re bringing forward, that person is listening to this for the first time, and they are a new audience, and we have to meet them where they are.”

In this episode, Jerome and Julienne talk to Derek McCracken, a New York-based health equity activist who teaches narrative medicine, pedagogy and applied writing for Columbia School of Professional Studies and serves on the board of Say Ah!, which is a health literacy nonprofit agency. They talk about the importance of narratives to build relationships, within healthcare and beyond, improve health literacy and health equity, and create the connections needed for effective advocacy. After this, they look at narratives in a broader light, talking about the healing power of seeing your life as a big narrative, the power stories have to break through hierarchies, and how storytelling can help people realize that whatever they are going through, whether it be health or career challenges, they are not the only ones and they are not alone.

Listen to this episode to learn more about the connection between storytelling and health literacy, greeting cards and health advocacy, and listening and health equity, among many other things.


Click here for free narrative medicine sessions

Click here for more information about Say Ah!’s work on health literary

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