Clear Health Communication Checklist for
Health literacy is now known to be vital to good patient care and positive health
outcomes. Clear health communication can address low health literacy by improving
the dialogue between patients and providers. The checklist below provides simple,
no-cost, ways to achieve clear health communication without adding significant time
to the patient visit.
- I encourage my patients to ask me questions about their diagnosis and treatment
during and after the office visit.
- I have created a safe office environment where patients feel comfortable talking
openly with me and my staff.
- I use plain language instead of technical language or medical jargon when explaining
the diagnosis to patients.
- I provide specific verbal and written instructions to patients related to their
- I explain to patients the importance of complying with my treatment instructions
and the consequences of non-compliance.
- I sit down, rather than stand, to achieve eye level with my patient.
- I use visual models to illustrate a procedure or condition.
- I ask patients to "teach back" the care instructions I've given to ensure they understand
- I speak slowly and maintain eye contact with my patients when providing a diagnosis
or treatment instructions.
- I minimize interruptions, such as phone calls, during patient consultations.
Disclaimer: Pfizer encourages other Healthcare Organizations to use
this Quiz and Provider Checklist on Health Literacy. If you are interested in using
this Quiz or Checklist, please submit a
request for permission to do so.
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