Health Literacy Studies Conducted in Australia: A Scoping Review Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • Health literacy (HL) is an essential component of various literacies mentioned in the field of health and education, including cultural, technological, media and scientific literacies. It is important for motivating higher consumer engagement. We aimed to review previous studies of HL in Australia to inform future studies, extend current knowledge and further enhance HL. Using search strings, a systematic search of four databases (i.e., MEDLINE; Embase; CINAHL and Eric) was carried out. A Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) based search strategy led to identification of a total of N = 9696 records, that were further screened for inclusion in the review. The review findings were categorized into three major themes: (1) HL and health numeracy; (2) contrast of: knowledge deficiency, knowledge gained, problems of current health care system and (3) HL measurement methods and its domains. The findings from this scoping review show a dearth of measurement tools with sound psychometric properties for assessing HL. The findings also reveal low levels of HL in consumers which is in turn affecting health-related behaviors, utilization of health services and navigation of the health system. More recent developments have tried to integrate vital aspects, including introduction of applications to increase HL and exploring HL in Aboriginal communities.

authors

  • Choudhry, FR
  • Ming, LC
  • Munawar, K
  • Zaidi, STR
  • Patel, RP
  • Khan, TM
  • Elmer, Shandell

publication date

  • 2019