Health Literacy: making it everybody’s business

Fri, 3 July 2015

On Thursday 25 June, National Voices’ Director of Policy Don Redding gave a presentation “Health literacy and the reforms” at a seminar titled “Health Literacy: making it everybody’s business”.

Hosted by the Health Literacy Group, the seminar explored the challenge of low health literacy, the impact that this has on people’s health and wellbeing, and what can be done to address this. The World Health Organisation defines health literacy as

“the personal characteristics and social resources needed for individuals and communities to access, understand, appraise and use information and services to make decisions about health, or that have implications for health. Health literacy includes the capacity to communicate, assert and enact these decisions.”

Gill Rowlands underlined the importance of understanding health literacy: low health literacy is associated with higher levels of ill health, higher mortality and with less healthy lifestyles. In his presentation, Don argued that that person centred care can only be achieved if the health literacy challenge is recognised and addressed.  All presentations from the day are available online

The Health Literacy group currently has a call out for papers for their next conference, being held next March in Glasgow. Information about this is on their website