The implications of these findings are that health literacy is not an issue only for clinicians serving urban or poor populations, but that low health literacy is a widespread Low health literacy in many communities.
Only 12 percent of adults have Proficient health literacy, according to the National Assessment of Adult Literacy.
Examples of easier-to-understand materials could include videos, picture-based messages, or text-based material that is written at a lower reading level. Further research with sufficient sample sizes to address these issues could provide important insight. A Call to Action.
We now recognize that health literacy is a "systems issue" Rudd,reflecting Low health literacy complexity of both the presentation of health information and navigation of the health care system.
Without accessible information, there is no basis by which an individual, organization, or community can process messages to improve health outcomes. More guidelines for creating materials according to plain language guidelines can be found at the following Web sites: Populations most likely to experience low health literacy are older adults, racial and ethnic minorities, people with less than a high school degree or GED certificate, people with low income levels, non-native speakers of English, and people with compromised health status.
Shame and health literacy: In the US, California has been at the vanguard of service delivery in languages other than English. Only 12 percent of adults have Proficient health literacy, according to the National Assessment of Adult Literacy. What Is Plain Language? A person who functions adequately at home or work may have marginal or inadequate literacy in a health care environment.
For your convenience, the original studies are cited. The AMA has offered the following definition of health literacy: Organizational Health Literacy Organizational health literacy is what organizations and professionals do to help people.
Anyone who needs health information and services also needs health literacy skills to Find information and services Communicate their needs and preferences and respond to information and services Process the meaning and usefulness of the information and services Understand the choices, consequences and context of the information and services Decide which information and services match their needs and preferences so they can act Anyone who provides health information and services to others, such as a doctor, nurse, dentist, pharmacist, or public health worker, also needs health literacy skills to Help people find information and services Communicate about health and healthcare Process what people are explicitly and implicitly asking for Understand how to provide useful information and services Decide which information and services work best for different situations and people so they can act Researchers can choose from many different types of health literacy skill measures.
Provide a table of contents and links back to the main page Zarcadoolas et al. Speaking plainly is just as important as writing plainly. Literacy impacts health knowledge, health status, and access to health services. Health information for people with LEP needs to be communicated plainly in their primary language, using words and examples that make the information understandable.
Improving health communication reduces health care costs and increases the quality of health care. Use of preventive services According to research studies, persons with limited health literacy skills are more likely to skip important preventive measures such as mammograms, Pap smears, and flu shots.
Plain language is communication that users can understand the first time they read or hear it. Archives of Family Medicine, 5 6: Among those without LEP, percentages with low health literacy ranged from Definitions of Health Literacy The term health literacy was introduced in in a paper calling for minimum health education standards for all grade-school levels in the United States US National Library of Medicine, Other patients may acknowledge their limitations, but try very hard to hide them so as to avoid embarrassment Vezeau, Research Findings on the Impact of Low Health Literacy Below are just a few of the conclusions from studies on health literacy and outcomes.
One study found that those with limited health literacy skills reported a sense of shame about their skill level. In contrast, marginalized populations, such as ethnic groups that speak English as a second language, the poor, and the elderly have less access to online health information.
Functional health literacy and the risk of hospital admission among Medicare managed care enrollees. Several diagnostic tools have been developed to identify patients most at risk for having inadequate health literacy.
Help to train all health care staff in the principles of health literacy and plain language. In response to these critics, new measures of health literacy have been developed. Inadequate health literacy is more prevalent among vulnerable populations, such as the elderly, minorities, persons with lower education, and persons with chronic disease DeWalt et al.
However, literacy skills and educational attainment are not synonymous, as education can dramatically underestimate literacy Baker et al, Patient Education and Counseling.
We must work together to ensure that health information and services can be understood and used by all Americans. Create collections or repositories of materials e. Individual patients and providers need to work together to ensure effective communication.
Health information can overwhelm even persons with advanced literacy skills. Accessed on October 21, For example, calculating cholesterol and blood sugar levels, measuring medications, and understanding nutrition labels all require math skills.Health literacy refers to how well a person can get the health information and services that they need, and how well they understand them.
It is also about using them to make good health decisions. Apr 26, · Those with low health literacy tended to be older and of lower socioeconomic status.
They also were less likely to have a high school education and had. Hidden Barriers and Practical Strategies.
We will also touch on some practical strategies that can help our practice do a better job caring for people with low health literacy. Slide 2. Hidden Barriers to Communicating with Patients.
Health Literacy: Hidden Barriers and Practical Strategies. Content last reviewed December The implications of these findings are that health literacy is not an issue only for clinicians serving urban or poor populations, but that low health literacy is a widespread problem in many communities.
Low health literacy was once viewed as an individual patient's deficit-that is, a patient's lack of knowledge and skills regarding health issues.
We now recognize that health literacy is a "systems issue" (Rudd, ), reflecting the complexity of both the presentation of health information and navigation of the health care system.
Health literacy refers to how well a person can get the health information and services that they need, and how well they understand them. Learn more.Download