Click for fellowship nomination details.
Click to view the video we made in honor of Health Literacy Month!

This weeks findings on health literacy include:

  • A study on college students that assessed associations between eHealth literacy, individual factors and health behaviors.
  • An examination of the influence of the timing and source of sex knowledge and education on current safe sex knowledge and risky sexual behaviours among middle-aged and older adults.
  • An assessment  of 300 web sites determining the readability of Internet-based patient education materials  on mammography for breast cancer screenings.

Hsu W, Chiang C, Yang S (2104). The Effect of Individual Factors on Health Behaviors Among College Students: The Mediating Effects of eHealth Literacy. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 16.

Key Finding: “Because this study showed that eHealth literacy mediates the association between individual factors and health behaviors, schools should aim to enhance students’ eHealth literacy and promote their health behaviors to help them achieve high levels of critical eHealth literacy.”

Allyson Stella Graf , Julie Hicks Patrick (2105). Foundations of life-long sexual health literacy:. Health Education, 115.

Key Finding: “Those with formal sex education in adolescence scored significantly higher on safe sex knowledge. However, they also engaged in more risky sex behaviours.”

AlKhalili, R., Shukla, P. A., Patel, R. H., Sanghvi, S., & Hubbi, B. (2014). Readability Assessment of Internet-based Patient Education Materials Related to Mammography for Breast Cancer Screening. Academic Radiology, 20.

Key Finding: “IPEMs related to mammography are written well above the recommended sixth-grade level and likely reflect other IPEMs in diagnostic radiology.”


Last month we announced our 2014 Health Literacy Heroes nominated by the Health Literacy Maryland coalition for shown dedication and service in addressing health literacy in the State of Maryland. The awardees will soon be receiving citations (see below) signed by Maryland State Delegate Nathan-Pulliam recognizing their extraordinary work and efforts! For more information on our Health Literacy Heroes, visit our previous post here.



The CDC put out the video below for National Influenza Vaccination Week. Watch, visit & for more info, and don’t forget to get a flu shot!


Best Bones Forever!

December 11, 2014

Best Bones Forever!™
is a nation wide bone health campaign that focuses on helping young girls ages 9-14 and their parents understand that the importance of building strong bones for life.  Successes include the training of  350 peer educators who will be bringing Best Bones Forever! to girls in 75 cities across the nation. The campaign has functioned under the U.S Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Women’s Health but will now be transitioning to operate under the leadership of a nonprofit partner organization, American Bone health, based in Oakland, CA.

Their website, specifically targeting teens, provides tips and fun activities that promote bone health including recipe ideas for slumber parties, school lunches and holidays!

Resources for parents, educators and the media can be found here.

Below are some of their health tips for building strong bones:

  • “Load up on calcium. Girls need 1,300 milligrams of calcium every day. That may sound like a lot, but just one cup of low-fat or fat-free milk has 300 milligrams. Other milk products like cheese and yogurt are also packed with calcium. Plus, there are sources you may not expect, like almonds, spinach, and calcium-fortified orange juice — which actually has bbf-forever-logoas much calcium per serving as milk. For more ideas, check out these tips for getting plenty of calcium-rich foods.
  • Don’t forget the vitamin D. Vitamin D helps bones use calcium, and girls need 600 international units (IUS) every day. Foods like salmon, fortified milk, and fortified cereals are great sources of vitamin D. Have more questions about calcium and vitamin D? Check out this page oneating for strong bones.
  • Get moving — together. Girls need 60 minutes of physical activity every day, including three days a week of bone-strengthening or weight-bearing activities like walking, running, jumping, or dancing. The best part is you can join her! Help her get moving with these tips.

For more even info on the campaign click here


This weeks findings on health literacy include:

  • A study that sought to examine plastic surgeons’ perception of patient literacy.
  • An assessment that aimed to quantify the relationship between health literacy and Internet use for seeking health information among Americans aged 65 and older.
  • A description of the effects of a health literacy curriculum on community physicians’ knowledge and self reported use of health literate communication strategies in pediatric outpatient settings.


Vargas, C. R., Chuang, D. J., & Lee, B. T. (2014). Assessment of patient health literacy: a national survey of plastic surgeons. Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 134, 6, 1405-14.

Key Finding: “Formal assessment of health literacy is rarely performed, as most plastic surgeons use a general impression. Although plastic surgeons devote significant time to patient counseling, evidence-based communication methods, such as the teach-back method, are underused. Simple, directed questions can identify patients with low literacy skills, to accommodate their communication needs.”


Levy, H., Janke, A. & Langa, K. (2014). Health Literacy and the Digital Divide Among Older Americans. Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Key Finding: “Low health literacy is associated with significantly less use of the Internet for health information among Americans aged 65 and older. Web-based health interventions targeting older adults must address barriers to substantive use by individuals with low health literacy, or risk exacerbating the digital divide.”


Connelly, R. A., Tran, X. G., Xu, L., Giardino, A. P., & Turner, T. L. (November 15, 2014). Increased Use of Health Literacy Strategies for Communication by Physicians.Health Behavior and Policy Review, 1, 6, 460-471.

Key Finding: “Our brief, skills-based CME program using evidence-based educational principles and health literacy communication strategies increased community physicians’ self-reported use of at least 3 health literacy communication skills.” Continuing Medical Education (CME) program CME IS a 3-hour active-learning program that uses “evidence-based teaching strategies for practice change, principles of adult learning theory, and Kolb’s model of experiential learning” to enhance health literacy knowledge.



Watch the video below to check out one of the latest #GetCovered stories posted by the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. For more on his story click here. Also visit  NOW to re-enroll for health coverage through the Marketplace!



Dr. Rima E. Rudd, health literacy scholar

The Herschel S. Horowitz Center for Health Literacy announces its 2015 Rima E. Rudd Fellowship for doctoral candidates. This fellowship is intended to support the next generation of researchers who advance the science of health literacy. Doctoral candidates from all backgrounds, disciplines and units in the University of Maryland System are encouraged to apply. (Deadline is noon, February 16, 2015!) The Fellowship carries an annual stipend of up to $30,000 and candidacy tuition remission (if not covered by other tuition remission). Find out about the nomination submission process for the Rima E. Rudd Fellowship in Health Literacy.