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Healthcare Communications (Digital Badge)

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Recorded on July 21, 2022 (Part 1), July 28, 2022 (Part 2), August 4, 2022 (Part 3), August 11, 2022 (Part 4)

Presented by Dr. Shelby Forbes

When attended in its entirety, this program offers 6.0 CEs for Psychologists and the Healthcare Communications Digital Badge.

Workshop Description:

Operating from the premise that effective patient-provider communication is essential to the efficacy of health related interventions, this multi-part presentation will cover a variety of topics in health communication.

The first part, entitled Narrative & Medicine will discuss strategies for honoring patient stories in practice, and for using those stories as a diagnostic tool. Drawing upon the principles of narrative medicine (Charon, 2001), practitioners will learn to see patients’ stories of illness not only as sties for harvesting relevant clinical information, but as opportunities for patient and provider to engage in mutual meaning making.

The second part of this four-part series covers the topic of organizational health communication. This part of the presentation focuses on how organizational dynamics and structures influence the provision of patient care. More specifically, here we will consider how institutional practices such as the transfer of care, institutional hierarchies, and interactions that occur “front stage” and “back stage” both facilitate and inhibit healthcare delivery.

The third part of this presentation examines the intersections of health and culture. In this section, we will consider how cultural beliefs impact health outcomes, especially from the perspective of historically marginalized communities and people of color. We will pay special attention to health beliefs outside of a Western context, and aim to identify ways to reconcile traditional and alternative healthcare approaches. Practitioners will learn specific strategies for adopting a culturally sensitive approach to healthcare, developing intercultural competency along the way, and ultimately eschewing ethnocentric beliefs, which may interfere with their practice

Finally, the fourth part of the series attends to end-of-life matters. During this part of the series, lecture attendees will reflect on the ethics of healthcare. They will question previously held assumptions regarding the rights and responsibilities of both the patient and provider. They will become familiar with end-of-life cultural movements and laws surrounding physician-assisted suicide. They will also interrogate these matters in conjunction with concepts like medical paternalism, asymmetrical power dynamics between patient and provider, and patient autonomy.

Learning Objectives:

After attending this advanced-level program, participants will be able to:

Part 1:

  • Describe a new branch of medicine being practiced by clinicians called “narrative medicine,” and thus be abreast of current modes of inquiry in health research.
  • Honor patients’ stories of physical and mental illness, and by bearing witness to them, provide the patient with recognition and validation.

Part 2:

  • Identify common areas of miscommunication amongst providers (e.g., during handoffs and transfer of care), thus learning to avoid these missteps in their own practice.
  • Identify how organizational hierarchies characteristic of medicine and higher education work against proper care, leading to mistakes and misdiagnoses.

Part 3:

  • Describe how cultural beliefs impact health outcomes through an examination of case studies of maternal and fetal medicine in Africa.
  • Account for how systemic factors like poverty, race/ethnicity, and nationality impact health interventions by analyzing a case study of HIV/AIDS sex workers in India.
  • Investigate the history of the Tuskegee Experiment and how it has impacted medical research practices, ensuring that practitioners’ future research with human participants is ethical.
  • Implement a culture-centered approach (Dutta, 2006) to healthcare in their own practice.

Part 4:

  • Trace the origins of the Hippocratic Oath, coming to know how this historical text influences modern clinical practices.
  • Review different state laws regarding the right to die and physician-assisted suicide, and translate the ethical considerations implicit in these political and social movements to their daily decision-making processes.
  • Examine “right to die” case studies, like Terri Schiavo and Brittany Maynard, and form or solidify personal ethical foundations to healthcare delivery.

Program Standards and Goals:

This program meets APA’s continuing education Standard 1.1: Program content focuses on application of psychological assessment and/or intervention methods that have overall consistent and credible empirical support in the contemporary peer reviewed scientific literature beyond those publications and other types of communications devoted primarily to the promotion of the approach.

This program meets APA’s continuing education Goal 2: Program will enable psychologists to keep pace with the most current scientific evidence regarding assessment, prevention, intervention, and/or education as well as important relevant legal, statutory, leadership, or regulatory issues.


Basu, A. (2020). Critical reflexivity in health communication fieldwork: Points of engagement. SAGE Publications Ltd.

Dutta, M. J. (2018). Culture-centered approach in addressing health disparities: Communication infrastructures for subaltern voices. Communication Methods and Measures, 12(4), 239-259.

Marcus, E.R., Charon, R. (2019). Narrative medicine and the treatment-resistant patient. In V. Fornari, I. Dancyger (Eds.), Psychiatric nonadherence: A solutions-based approach (pp.129-144). Springer.

McLeod, G. (2018). Narrative medicine: A personal interview with expert Rita Charon. University of Manitoba Journal of Medicine, 1(1), 17-19.

O’Shay, S. (2022). ‘The chronicle of nightmares’: Emergency nurses’ frontstage and backstage communication in the emergency department. Health Communication, 37(8), 1-12.

Roscoe, L. A., & Tullis, J. A. (2015). The meaning of everything: Communication at the end of life. Journal of Medicine and the Person, 13(2), 75-81.

Roscoe, L. A., Eisenberg, E. M., & Forde, C. (2016). The role of patients’ stories in emergency medicine triage. Health communication, 31(9), 1155-1164.

Roscoe, L. A., & Barrison, P. (2018). Dilemmas adult children face in discussing end-of-life care preferences with their parents. Health Communication, 34(14), 1788-1794.

Zaharias, G. (2018). What is narrative-based medicine? Canadian Family Physician, 64(3), 176-180.

Registration & Fees:



*To receive the valid TCSPP Student/Staff discount code, please email [email protected] from your valid TCSPP email address (Subject: HEALTH COMMUNICATIONS TCSPP CODE)

Continuing Education:

Target Audience: All mental health disciplines. Graduate students welcome.

Psychologists. This program, when attended in its entirety, is available for 6.0 continuing education credits. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is committed to accessibility and non-discrimination in its continuing education activities. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is also committed to conducting all activities in conformity with the American Psychological Association’s Ethical Principles for Psychologists. Participants are asked to be aware of the need for privacy and confidentiality throughout the program. If program content becomes stressful, participants are encouraged to process these feelings during discussion periods. If participants have special needs, we will attempt to accommodate them. Please address questions, concerns and any complaints to [email protected]. There is no commercial support for this program nor are there any relationships between the CE Sponsor, presenting organization, presenter, program content, research, grants, or other funding that could reasonably be construed as conflicts of interest.

Participation Certificate. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is able to provide students and other participants who simply wish to have documentation of their attendance at the program a participation certificate.

Non Psychologists. Most licensing boards accept Continuing Education Credits sponsored by the American Psychological Association, but non-psychologists are recommended to consult with their specific state-licensing board to ensure that APA-sponsored CE is acceptable.

*Participants must attend 100% of the program in order to obtain a Certificate of Attendance.

The Chicago School of Professional Psychology is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology maintains responsibility for this program and its content.