224174 Increasing Oral Health Literacy: Maryland's Model

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 : 4:50 PM - 5:10 PM

Alice M. Horowitz, PhD , University of Maryland, University of Maryland, College Park, MD
A large-scale, representative study found that nearly nine out of ten U.S. adults have some difficulty understanding basic health information. The average American reads at the 8th to 9th grade level. Health information is usually written at a much higher reading level.

People with limited health literacy are often less likely to seek preventive care, comply with prescribed treatment and maintain self-care regimens needed to control chronic diseases. In the U.S., limited literacy skills are a stronger predictor of an individual's health status than age, income, employment status, education level, and racial or ethnic group.

Limited health literacy is estimated to cost the U.S. between 100 and 200 billion dollars each year. Health outcomes may be improved by appropriately intervening at the social, institutional and educational levels.

This presentation will describe the Maryland Model to address oral health literacy.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Communication and informatics
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe Maryland's model for increasing oral health literacy. Discuss methods this model included to establish baseline information for all provider groups and general public.

Keywords: Health Literacy, Oral Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have the educational background and I am the PI on this study.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.