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Screen Shot 2014-04-18 at 3.22.08 PMThe Affordable Care Act (ACA) has changed the healthcare system. Many Americans may find  the Marketplace confusing and have low awareness of how it works or how it can affect their current health insurance coverage. A lack of knowledge may contribute to low levels of enrollment in Marketplaces.

A new survey shows that young adults between ages 18 to 30 have low awareness of the ACA and health insurance information in general. This group has also had the lowest enrollment rates in the the ACA’s Marketplaces across the country.

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Watch this video by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to learn more about the Health Insurance Marketplace and how it can help you find affordable healthcare.

An educational session, Prevention of Early Childhood Caries through use of Effective Regimens and Communication Skills, is being hosted on Saturday, May 10, 2014, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m by the Herschel S. Horowitz Center for Health Literacy, in College Park, Maryland.

Come to the continuing education session to learn how early childhood caries can be prevented when parents and providers have accurate information and actionable skills. View the session agenda and details here.

The session will be held at the College Park Marriott Inn & Conference Center. Free parking, food, and continuing education credits are provided.

Register today! For more information, please contact Sarah D. Radice at or (301) 405-2356.

This week’s key findings in health literacy and health communication research include:


  • Older adult patients with cognitive dysfunction have difficulty with health literacy assessments.
  • Limited health literacy is a barrier to participation in England’s colorectal cancer (CRC) screening program.
  • Many senior patients struggle to follow medication regimens because they are too complicated and confusing.

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Last week the Herschel S. Horowitz Center for Health Literacy spread the word about health literacy at two events on the University of Maryland, College Park campus during National Public Health Week.


Lisa Bowen, graduate student, and her poster “Improving Health Literacy and Cultural Competency of FDA Consumer Materials: Hepatitis C”

On April 8, 2014, the University of Maryland School of Public Health hosted the second annual Public Health Research at Maryland Day.

Event attendees consisted of students and faculty from the University of Maryland, College Park and the University of Maryland, Baltimore, as well as community, state and federal partners.

Students and faculty shared their research during a poster session. Some of the poster categories included:

  • Health Literacy, Health Communications, Health Education
  • Family Health, Child Health, Adolescent Health
  • Health Care, Access, Insurance
  • Health Disparities

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Watch this video about how Sexton Elementary in St. Petersburg, Florida makes school lunches healthy and fun with the help of a “wacky” cafeteria manager. They also integrate exercise and physical activity throughout the school day. With the support of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation’s Healthy Schools Program, Sexton is able to help students learn about health.

We all know how confusing health literacy can be. But, would cartoons help people understand more? Helen Osborne has a podcast where she discusses just that with MK Czerwiec, a nurse who makes comics.

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MK Czerwiec has a comic website called Comic Nurse and she also co-runs Graphic Medicine with Dr. Ian Williams, who also makes comics. Graphic Medicine is a “site that explores the interaction between the medium of comics and the discourse of healthcare.”

Listen to the podcast “Comics and Medicine: That’s Health Literacy, Too” to learn about:

  • How comics can be used to communicate about health, illness, and medicine
  • Why comics have been found to be effective in reaching diverse audiences
  • Resources to learn more about making and using comics in healthcare