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Health Literacy

Primary Listings

Health Literacy - Definition (HRSA)

The Health Resources and Services Administration provides a definition of health literacy and a quick summary of its impact

Health Literacy - Resources

This Quick Guide contains resources to learn more about health literacy, including strategies to improve the usability of health information

Health Literacy Fact Sheets (pdf)

Fact Sheets (August 2005) by the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS), a national non-profit organization devoted to improving the quality of health services for people served by publicly financed care. Based in Hamilton, New Jersey

Health Literacy of America’s Adults (released Sept, 2006)

Results from the 2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy, by the National Center for Education Statistics (US Dept. of Education). Only 12% of adults were found to have Proficient (highest) level of health literacy, and more than 1/3 were at Basic or Below Basic levels. Report only; no recommendations

Health Literacy: What Did the Doctor Say? (pdf)

The Joint Commission's 64-page white paper highlights the issue of health literacy and the difficulties many Americans have in being able to process and understand important health information. Implications for patient safety are addressed. Released by JCAHO Feb. 2007

Other Helpful Listings

Health Information in Multiple Languages

MedlinePlus (part of US National Library of Medicine) provides health information for various topics in multiple languages such as Arabic, Farsi, Japanese, Somali, Vietnamese, as well as European languages; 46 languages in all. The multilingual collection does not include all topics

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