Format

Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Public Health Policy. 2007;28(1):71-93.

Plain language: a strategic response to the health literacy challenge.

Author information

1
AHEC Health Literacy Center, University of New England, Biddeford, ME 04005, USA. sstableford@une.edu

Abstract

Low health literacy is a major challenge confronting American and international health organizations. Research in the past decade has documented the prevalence of limited literacy and limited health literacy skills among adults worldwide. This creates a major policy challenge: how to create text-based health information - a common method of health communication - that is accessible to the public. Plain language is a logical, flexible response. While touted by American, Canadian, and European health policy makers, adoption and promotion of plain language standards and skills in health-focused organizations have lagged. Most text-based health information continues to be too hard for most adults to read. Barriers to more rapid diffusion of plain language are reflected in a set of myths perpetuated by critics. These myths are identified and refuted. While plain language is only one of many broad-based solutions needed to address low health literacy, the benefits to everyone demand increased use by health organizations.

PMID:
17363939
DOI:
10.1057/palgrave.jphp.3200102
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Nature Publishing Group
    Loading ...
    Support Center