Building an Understanding of Environmental Health

The work of the environmental health field is critical to improving the health, well-being and quality of life for all people across the nation. But many people don't understand the field's importance. Recent research by the FrameWorks Institute, sponsored by us and funded through CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health, reveals:

  • The term "environmental health" isn't familiar to most Americans. When asked to guess what the term might mean, the most likely response is about how humans affect the environment, but not how the environment affects public health. 
  • Many Americans assume health outcomes mostly result from individual choices about diet and exercise. The connections between our environment and public health are difficult to imagine.
  • People can grasp how contaminants can affect health. But this narrow focus on "toxic chemicals" makes it tough to understand other environmental health issues.

By understanding what the public thinks about environmental health, we have uncovered better strategies for talking with the public about environmental health work and the impacts of our environments on public health.

Check out this communications toolkit, Building Understanding of Environmental Health, which we sponsored with funding from the CDC's National Center for Environmental Health. The toolkit addresses the need for effective outreach and advocacy and aims to redefine and reinvigorate the public conversation around environmental health.

MV - EH - Upstream Downstream (Canada) from FrameWorks Institute on Vimeo.

Our three-part webinar series highlights tips and tools for communicating with your audience about environmental health.

We'd love to hear how you're applying these tools! Email us.