Health Literacy: Communication in Health Care

/ 11/10/2012 /

health literacyWhen patients leave the care of their physicians, nurses, and pharmacists, they take over the process at home by following written and oral instructions. If these instructions are not crystal clear to the patient, care breaks down.

Patients need health literacy to ensure they are getting the care and services that they need. It is also up to health care professionals to make health information easy to obtain and understand in order to empower patients to make the appropriate health decisions.

One of the main goals of Re:sourxe by Sodexo is improving patient outcomes when they leave the hospital to continue their care at home. The issue of health literacy is at the heart of this goal. We take care to offer quality products in our stores and to use plain language and easily accessible information to this end.

To Define Health Literacy

The AMA Council of Scientific Affairs specifically defines functional health literacy as “the ability to read and comprehend prescription bottles, appointment slips, and the other essential health-related materials required to successfully function as a patient.”

Health Literacy Month

To highlight the importance of health literacy, October marks Health Literacy Month. Helen Osborne started this awareness-raising observance in 1999. Now, in its 13th year, people around the world recognize Health Literacy Month in their own, unique ways.

Organizations and coalitions have hosted communication workshops for professionals in the health industry as well as health education programs for the general public. There are even classes for students of any grade level and online learning forums that disseminate information via webinars.

Not Sure Where to Start with Health Literacy Month?

There is an abundance of podcasts on the official Health Literacy Month site ranging from why health literacy is important to the progression of health literacy. Personal stories of how good doctor-patient communication changed and saved lives highlight the importance of health literacy on an emotional level.

Moreover, Helen Osborne can be contacted directly for consultations on how to appropriately communicate the importance of health literacy in their respective communities.

Re:sourxe Can Help

Re:sourxe offers turnkey healthcare solutions and is part of a Sodexo’s flagship retail concept. Re:sourxe houses all of the needs of hospital consumers from everyday essentials to kids’ needs.

Re:sourxe stores and their health and wellness products can contribute to health literacy initiatives around the community.

health literacy