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Am J Health Behav. 2007 Sep-Oct;31 Suppl 1:S19-26.

The causal pathways linking health literacy to health outcomes.

Author information

1
Section of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine and Boston University Medical Center, Boston, MA 02118, USA. mpo@bu.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To provide an evidence-based review of plausible causal pathways that could best explain well-established associations between limited health literacy and health outcomes.

METHODS:

Through analysis of current findings in medical and public health literature on health literacy we derived a conceptual causal model.

RESULTS:

Health literacy should be viewed as both a patient and a system phenomenon. Three distinct points along a continuum of health care are suggested to be influenced by health literacy: (1) access and utilization of health care, (2) patient-provider relationship, and (3) self-care.

CONCLUSIONS:

The conceptual model organizes what has been learned to date and underscores promising areas of future inquiry and intervention.

PMID:
17931132
DOI:
10.5555/ajhb.2007.31.supp.S19
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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