The Relation Between Health Literacy to Health Outcomes Essay

The Relation Between Health Literacy to Health Outcomes Essay

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Health literacy can have a major impact on the health of a patient. This is because if the patient is unable to comprehend the information that is being provided to them by the health professional, they will not be able to take fully informed decisions regarding their health. When a health professional is communicating information to a patient they need to take a step back and evaluate how the patient is comprehending the information they are providing. This essay looks at two main topics. The first one is what health literacy is and how an individual's knowledge can influence how they how see and approach their own health. Second is what strategies a nurse can use to provide better outcomes for themselves and their patients when it comes to health literacy. Included is a personal reflection, which looks at how this student found preparing and conducting a teaching session on food safety to a class in a health literacy setting.

Health has many different definitions, one of which is The World Health Organization definition of health. "Is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity" (Brown & Edwards, 2012). In treating patients with health conditions nurses today need to look at a patient a holistic manner. This encompasses the whole person including environmental and socio – economic determinants that influence their health not just the condition they present with.

Literacy involves having the cognitive and social skills required to participate actively not only in the workplace but also in other areas of society. Having the ability to comprehend any information be it written or verbal gives people the ability to understand the knowledge they have, ach...

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Ministry of Health. (2010). Korero Marama Health Literacy and Maori Results from the 2006 Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey. Retrieved from Minstry of Health:

New Zealand Nurses Organisation. (2011). Call for Action - Health Literacy Policy and Practice for Nurses. Retrieved from New Zealand Nurses Organisation:

Papalia, D. E., Duskin Feldman, R., & Martorell, G. (2012). Experience Human Development (12 ed.). New York: McGraw Hill.

World Health Organisation. (2013). The Ottawa Charter for Health promotion. Retrieved from World Health Organisation :

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