Dr. Pete Kellet’s book on narrating patienthood will receive a national award this week.
The distinguished edited scholarly book award, from the National Communication Association’s Applied Communication Division, recognizes “Narrating Patienthood: Engaging Diverse Voices on Health, Communication, and the Patient Experience,” which the UNCG Professor of Communication Studies edited. He will receive the award at the national convention this Friday.
The book shows how differences in race, class, gender, age, sexual identity, and disability can shape health care communication.
“Diversity plays an important role in how people experience illness and health care,” Kellett said, in explaining the key point behind the book. “Understanding this, by listening to and learning from the experiences of diverse people, can help us improve health care outcomes.”
In 2011, he was diagnosed with macular telangiectasia, which leads to loss of vision.
“At that moment,” Kellett recalls, “I wished I had a coach who could explain what was happening, what to do, and how my life story would be impacted by this condition. We’re narrative creatures. We want the full story, and we rarely have that.”
Kellett wrote a book on his own experience, published in 2017. (The visuals, above, are from a recent medical appointment.) But he wanted to explore how patients different from him – in race, class, gender, age, sexual identity, or disability – encountered health care communication and the impact that had in shaping their health care experiences. That led to the award-winning “Narrating Patienthood.”
Learn more about his journey at https://researchmagazine.uncg.edu/fall-2019/off-the-chart