Talking Points About Health Literacy


You are a health literacy ambassador. It is up to you to make sure your colleagues, staff, leadership, and community are aware of the issues. Whether to review for yourself, present to others, or convince your leadership, the following resources may help you talk about health literacy.

Five Talking Points on Health Literacy: These brief talking points may be helpful if you need to tell someone quickly what health literacy is and why it is important. Add in talking points relevant to your organization.

  1. Nine out of 10 adults struggle to understand and use health information when it is unfamiliar, complex or jargon-filled.
  2. Limited health literacy costs the healthcare system money and results in higher than necessary morbidity and mortality.
  3. Health literacy can be improved if we practice clear communication strategies and techniques.
  4. Clear communication means using familiar concepts, words, numbers and images presented in ways that make sense to the people who need the information.
  5. Testing information with the audience before it is released and asking for feedback are the best ways to know if we are communicating clearly. We need to test and ask for feedback every time information is released to the general public.

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Page last reviewed: October 17, 2019