How Well Do You Know Your Family’s Health History?

Each year since 2004, the Surgeon General has declared Thanksgiving to be National Family History Day. Over the holiday or at other times when families gather, the Surgeon General encourages Americans to talk about, and to write down, the health problems that seem to run in their family. Learning about their family’s health history may help ensure a longer, healthier future together.

Americans know that family history is important to health. A recent survey found that 96 percent of Americans believe that knowing their family history is important. Yet, the same survey found that only one-third of Americans have ever tried to gather and write down their family’s health history.

Because family health history is such a powerful screening tool, the Surgeon General has created a new online portal to help make it fun and easy for anyone to create a sophisticated portrait of their family’s health.

The tool helps users organize family history information and then print it a copy for their family doctor. The tool also helps users save their family history information to their own computer and even share it with other family members. Access the My Family Health Portrait Web tool.

Knowing your family’s health history helps you to be more active in your own care. atom Alliance help patients acquire the information, skills and confidence to live well and effectively manage their health and healthcare. Learn more.