Health Literacy Concern Among Healthcare Professionals

Subject: Public Health
Pages: 1
Words: 273
Reading time:
2 min
Study level: Master

Health literacy is a growing concern among healthcare professionals, and the provided presentation helps to appreciate the importance of the subject. Indeed, in clinical practice, there are many barriers that care providers face in order to deliver high-quality, patient-centered care. According to the presentation, 36% of adult Americans are identified to have serious limitations in health literacy skills. However, the problem is not limited to the US since a study by Sørensen et al. (2015) describes similar problems in Europe. According to the study, 12% of respondents showed insufficient health literacy, while 47% of the cohort had limited health literacy (Sørensen et al., 2015).

However, mere understanding of the fact is not insufficient, and care providers need to realize the implications of the matter. For healthcare authorities, the researchers recommend developing public health strategies utilizing the findings in order to improve health provision equity (Sørensen et al., 2015). At the same time, every healthcare professional can adopt appropriate practices to improve the outcomes of patients with low health literacy.

The presentation provides valuable insights concerning the common mistakes clinicians make while providing care. For instance, healthcare professionals routinely use such words as screening, hygiene, cardiovascular, annual, referral, and others, which may confuse patients even though they seem self-explanatory. Therefore, physicians and nurses are to make sure they use simple language when addressing the patients. At the same time, it is vital to provide concise information supported by visual aid, focus on “need-to-know” and “need-to-do,” and utilize teach-back techniques. In summary, the presentation provides a holistic overview of the problem and provides specific strategies for addressing the issue of low health literacy among patients.


Sørensen, K., Pelikan, J., Röthlin, F., Ganahl, K., Slonska, Z., & Doyle, G., … Brand, H. (2015). Health literacy in Europe: Comparative results of the European health literacy survey (HLS-EU). The European Journal of Public Health, 25(6), 1053-1058. Web.