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Health literacy plays a key role in a patient-centered approach to care

Monday, July 17, 2023 | Posted in GEHA Connection Dental Network News

Health literacy plays a key role in a patient-centered approach to care. It is difficult for patients to take the best care of themselves without understanding proper self-care methods. Compounding the problem, parents with poor health literacy don’t receive care as often as they should and pass this lack of knowledge along to their children.

Here are several ways you can help patients improve their health literacy:

  • Use straightforward, uncomplicated language
  • Provide information at an appropriate grade level that all can comprehend
  • Use pictures and videos to convey your message
  • Alter your message according to the patient’s needs and understanding

Better health literacy may not only help improve treatment outcomes but may also reduce treatment costs. Not to mention, help patients feel better in general. Changing how you deliver your messages to patients can translate to improvements for everyone.

Sources:
“Health Literacy in Dentistry.” ada.org, American Dental Association.
“8 Ways to Improve Health Literacy.” ihi.org, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, 15 October, 2014.


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