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Book and Media Reviews
June 13, 2007

Narrative Matters: The Power of the Personal Essay in Health Policy

Author Affiliations

Book and Media Reviews Section Editor: John L. Zeller, MD, PhD, Fishbein Fellow.

JAMA. 2007;297(22):2529-2533. doi:10.1001/jama.297.22.2531

Narrative Matters is a compilation of accounts depicting health and disease and their context in the 21st century. It includes tales written by clinicians, policy makers, parents, children, and patients. Although stories about the human struggle with illness have been written since the dawn of humanity, this compilation is unique not only because of its strong relevance to today's health policy but also because it was first published in Health Affairs, a formal health policy journal. Thus, the reader is surrounded by a comfortable realization that these narratives indeed matter.