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Health Literate Care Model

Overview

What is the Health Literate Care Model?

In order for health outcomes to improve, patients must be fully engaged in prevention, decision making, and self-management. The Health Literate Care Model weaves health literacy principles into the widely adopted Chronic Care Model and calls for health care providers to:

  • Approach all patients as if they are at risk of not understanding health information.
  • Employ a range of strategies for clear communication.
  • Confirm patients’ understanding.

When a health care organization adopts the Health Literate Care Model, health literacy becomes an organizational value infused into all aspects of planning and operations.

Read the original article in Health Affairs.

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Related Resources

Health Literate Care Model

When a health care organization adopts the Health Literate Care Model, health literacy becomes an organizational value infused into all aspects of planning and operations.

A Universal Precautions Approach

A universal precautions approach means treating all patients as if they are at risk of not understanding health information.

Community Partners

Resources and Policies

Partnerships between health care providers and community organizations can improve access to the resources and skills people need to manage their health effectively.

Health Literate Systems

Organization of Health Care

Health literate organizations make it easier for people to navigate, understand, and use health information and services.

Delivery System Design

In the Health Literate Care Model, staff members take on diverse roles to deliver care that can be adapted so it’s appropriate for the various levels of health literacy the patient may be experiencing.

Health Information Systems

Clinical information systems and electronic medical records are useful tools for both providers and patients.

Self-Management Support

Patients need help learning how to manage their health day to day. Health care providers can facilitate this learning by offering self-management support.

Shared Decision Making

Shared decision making is a process that allows patients and their health care providers to make decisions together.

Apply Improvement Methods

Health organizations that adopt the Health Literate Care Model explicitly incorporate health literacy into their ongoing efforts to improve quality of care.

Improve Written Communication

In order to be effective, print materials must be easy for people to read, understand, and act on.

Link to Supportive Systems

Supportive systems include non-medical support, medication assistance, and health literacy resources.

Improve Verbal Interaction

Training can help providers improve their communication skills.

Engage Patients as Partners in Care and Improvement Efforts

Patient and caregiver feedback is key to continuing to build and improve the health literate organization.

Strategies for Health Literate Organizations

This chart shows how different health literacy strategies relate to each aspect of the Health Literate Care Model.

Informed, Health Literate, Activated Patient and Family

In a health literate care system, patients and their families have the knowledge and skills they need to make informed decisions and provide feedback.

Productive Interactions

Productive interactions between patients and providers involve ongoing conversations, either face to face or facilitated by media such as patient portals.

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