Welcome to the first post on CDC’s new health literacy blog. The purpose of the blog is to stimulate ideas for new work in public health and health literacy, build relationships and community, and discuss our successes and challenges in real time.
Improving health literacy depends on the support and actions of many organizations working at all levels of society. CDC’s Office of the Associate Director for Communication (OADC) recognizes CDC can play a major role in raising awareness, disseminating information and leading by example in health literacy practice.
In that spirit, OADC is initiating a CDC Health Literacy Council that I will lead. The Council is an agency-wide group with representation from the Offices in CDC’s Office of the Director (Communication, Policy, Program and Minority Health and Health Disparities) and the seven National Centers that make up CDC. The Council’s purpose is to advise CDC programs and partners on steps they can take to improve health literacy.
To get the Council off to a strong start, I have drafted a CDC health literacy action plan for the Council to review and refine. The draft action plan uses the goals and strategies of the National Action Plan to Improve Health Literacy, is tailored to CDC’s mission, and identifies resources and areas of responsibility. I call on other organizations to join me in using the National Action Plan to write their own strategic plans for health literacy.
Also, check out the Strategic Plan for Risk Communication from FDA, one of our partners in improving health literacy. Let’s make every step we take to improve health literacy a strategic one!
I will monitor the blog and the site’s email box, provide information when requested and share your ideas as appropriate.
Here are two questions to get the conversation started on the blog.
1) What part does public health play in your current health literacy activities?
2) Thinking about your current or future health literacy activities, who in public health would you like to collaborate with?