The need to increase patient health literacy

Here is an eye-opening post from Stephen’s Lighthouse about the poor state of health literacy and how doctors can identify patients needing help:

6 signs of limited health literacy

Patients with low health literacy may:

  • Fill in registration forms incompletely or inaccurately.
  • Frequently miss appointments.
  • Fail to follow through with laboratory tests, imaging tests or referrals to consultants.
  • Say they are taking their medication, even though lab tests or physiological parameters do not change in the expected fashion.
  • Say: “I forgot my glasses. I’ll read this when I get home”; “I forgot my glasses. Can you read this to me?”; or “Let me take this home so I can discuss it with my children.”
  • Be unable to name their medications, explain what they are for or tell when they are supposed to take them.

Read the full post here: Health Literacy and Medical Consequences.

THL offers some reliable consumer health resources that can be used to help increase patient health literacy.

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