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Health Care Women Int. 2002 Sep-Nov;23(6-7):754-60.

A winning combination: women, literacy, and participation in health care.

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  • 1Harford Community College, Bel Air, Maryland, USA.


Health information materials written at the appropriate reading level help individuals manage their own health care. In this study, we assessed the reading ability of clients and readability of the patient information materials at a rural women's health clinic. We administered a reading comprehension test to 50 subjects and tested the patient education materials using a readability formula. More than one in six women could not read all of the patient information, which could limit their understanding, and achievement of good health care. Commercially available materials can be checked readily for reading level using software installed in most computers. This software also allows clinicians who prepare their own materials for their patients to generate versions that are appropriate for different reading levels.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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