Health Literacy Screening Tools (HLOL #124)

IMG_2662Barry D Weiss, MD is a tenured professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. He also is an affiliate professor of public health in the College of Health Sciences at the University of Alaska Anchorage. Dr. Weiss has been involved in health literacy and patient-physician communication for much of his professional career. Among his many accomplishments, he has written more than 150 journal articles, authored several books, advised numerous committees and organizations about health literacy, and developed the health literacy screening tool, the Newest Vital Sign.

In this podcast, Dr. Weiss talks with Helen Osborne about:

  • Several well-known health literacy screening tools including the REALM (Rapid Estimate of Adult Literacy in Medicine), TOFHLA (Test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults), Single Item Health Literacy Screen, and NVS (the Newest Vital Sign).
  • Reasons to use, and more importantly, not to use health literacy screening tools in routine clinical settings.
  • Recommendations about communicating effectively with everyone.

More ways to learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 1, 2, 11, 27.

Read this podcast’s written transcript.

Patients Unlike Others You’ve Treated Before (HLOL #120)

Becky-1546-5x7_ppBecky Curran was born an achondroplastic dwarf. She is passionate about finding a way to change how people with physical differences, including little people, are perceived in the media. Becky is committed to helping everyone accept the differences in others.

In this podcast, Helen Osborne talks with Becky Curran about:

  • Why health communication can be difficult when providers treat patients with rare disease and conditions.
  • A patient’s perspective about ways providers can build trust and communicate effectively with everyone.
  • How to portray the diversity of your audience in print and web materials.

More Ways to Learn:

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Second Edition (Updated 2018), by Helen Osborne. Relevant chapters include: 24, 32, 41.

To read a written transcript, go to http://healthliteracy.com/transcript.asp?PageID=12066

Dr. Rima Rudd Talks About the Health Literacy Burden in Healthcare (HLOL #15)

Dr. Rima Rudd is Senior Lecturer on Society, Human Development, and Health at the Harvard School of Public Health. Her work centers on health communication and the design and evaluation of public health programs. She teaches courses on innovative strategies in health education, program planning and evaluation, and health literacy.

Dr. Rudd is widely recognized as a leader in health literacy – helping to shape both the research and practice agenda in the US, Canada, and Europe. Dr. Rudd works closely with the adult education, public health, oral health, and medical sectors. Her current research looks at literacy-related disparities and literacy-related barriers to health programs, services, and care. Her Harvard website on health literacy serves scholars and practitioners.

In this podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about the health literacy burden in healthcare. Topics include:

  • Literacy-related disparities and barriers as they relate to healthcare
  • Deconstructing healthcare language, instructions, and activities
  • Literacy demands in chronic disease management, prevention, and navigation
  • Why it’s time to reconsider the definition of health literacy

More Ways to Learn:

  • Harvard School of Public Health, Health Literacy Studies. www.hsph.harvard.edu/healthliteracy
  • Communicating Health: Priorities and Strategies for Progress (2003), US Department of Health and Human Services & Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.  Dr. Rudd wrote the chapter about health literacy. Available at http://odphp.osophs.dhhs.gov/projects/healthcomm/
  • Literacy and Health in America (2004), Educational Testing Services. Dr. Rudd is one of the authors. Available at http://www.ets.org/Media/Research/pdf/PICHEATH.pdf
  • National Center for the Study of Adult Literacy and Learning (NCSALL), http://www.ncsall.net
  • Nielsen-Bohlman L, Panzer AM, Kindig DA, (ed), 2004. Health Literacy: A Prescription to End Confusion. The National Academies Press: Washington DC. Dr. Rudd was a member of the Institute of Medicine committee as well as writer/contributor to the book. Available at http://books.nap.edu

Read the transcript of this podcast.

Len & Ceci Doak Discuss Health Literacy’s Past, Present and Future (HLOL #13)

Cecelia (Ceci) and Leonard (Len) Doak are a husband and wife team who, for over 30 years, helped lead the way to health literacy. Their book, workshops, and articles have inspired advocates everywhere to improve health understanding.

Ceci started as a commissioned officer in the US Public Health Service. During her more 20 years there, Ceci developed and led numerous health education programs. In fact, she received a commendation from the Surgeon General for her work educating the public about cancer.

Len comes to health literacy via adult education, volunteering for many years as a tutor of non-readers. Len’s first career was as a Navy engineer and among his many accomplishments he helped simplify instructions for crews working on ships and submarines.

Len & Ceci co-authored the award-winning book, Teaching Patients with Low Literacy Skills. In their non-profit business Patient Learning Associates, Inc., Len and Ceci have written guidelines for many important projects and analyzed the suitability of over 2,000 healthcare materials in virtually all formats. They have presented at more than 200 health literacy workshops, training thousands of health professionals in all disciplines.

In this Health Literacy Out Loud podcast, they talk with Helen Osborne about the past, present, and future of health literacy. Topics include:

  • How health literacy began more than 30 years ago
  • Why health literacy was important then and is even more so today
  • Strategies to improve communication and assess if messages are understood
  • Ceci & Len Doak’s vision for health literacy in the future

More ways to learn:

  • Doak, Doak, & Root, Teaching Patients with Low Literacy Skills, Second Edition. 1996. Available for free at Harvard University School of Public Health’s Health Literacy Studies website, http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/healthliteracy/resources/doak-book/
  • Houts, Doak, Doak, Lascalzo. “The role of pictures in improving health communication:  A review of research on the benefits of pictures on attention, comprehension, recall, and adherence.”  Patient Education and Counseling, 61 (2006) 173-190, 2005 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
  • Osborne, H. “In Other Words…Can They Understand? Testing Patient Education Materials With Intended Readers,” On Call Magazine, Nov 2001. Available at http://www.healthliteracy.com/article.asp?PageID=3811

Read a transcript of this podcast. 
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Julie McKinney Talks About An Online Health Literacy Community (HLOL #10)

Julie McKinney moderates the “Health & Literacy Discussion List” (“List”) for the National Institute for Literacy. She also consults on a wide variety of health literacy projects in her work with World Education, Inc., the National Institute for Literacy, and others. McKinney helps build collaborations between the fields of adult literacy and health education.

In this podcast, she talks with Helen Osborne about an online health literacy community. Topics include:

  • What the “Health & Literacy Discussion List” is and ways to participate
  • How this List creates a sense of community and collaboration
  • Examples of projects, actions, and advocacy that arose from this List

More ways to learn:

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