Health Literacy is a Win-Win for Health Systems and Patients

May 11, 2018

The Pennsylvania Health Literacy Coalition recently hosted a two-day provider training and meeting in Lancaster, PA, which was attended by Coalition members from across the state. The first day, lead by faculty of Thomas Jefferson University, featured a “train-the-trainer” model for health care professionals. This session demonstrated the importance of health literacy as an important predictor of health outcomes, and offered strategies for improving written and verbal communication with patients.

The second day opened with a presentation by keynote speaker Christopher Trudeau, JD, an Associate Professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and the University of Arkansas, Little Rock Bowen School of Law. Professor Trudeau discussed best practices for designing a health literate informed consent process, and stressed how health literacy represents a “win-win” for both health care systems and patients. Through guiding principles of health literacy, health care systems can more effectively manage risk, and patients can better understand and act on health information.

The day also featured presentations from Pennsylvania-based groups on designing health literate materials and integrating best practices of health literacy into staff training materials at health care organizations. In the afternoon, representatives from a hospital setting (the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia) and a social enterprise organization (Global Wordsmiths) discussed the importance of ensuring high quality language access to patients with limited English proficiency. These panelists offered complementary examples of successful language access service models.

For more information about the Pennsylvania Health Literacy Coalition, please email





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