Health Literacy and the Disenfranchised: The Importance of Collaboration Between Limited English Proficiency and Health Literacy Researchers
ABSTRACT Inadequate health literacy and limited English proficiency are associated with poor health care access and outcomes. Despite what appears to be an interaction phenomenon-whereby the rate of inadequate health literacy is particularly high among limited English proficiency populations-researchers in health literacy and limited English proficiency rarely collaborate. As a result, few health literacy instruments and interventions have been developed or validated for smaller linguistic populations. Interventions to improve health outcomes for people with low health literacy and limited English proficiency show great potential to alleviate many of the health disparities currently experienced by some of the most disenfranchised individuals in our health care system, those from smaller linguistic minority groups, including Deaf American Sign Language users. It is critical for health literacy and limited English proficiency researchers to work together to understand how culture, language, literacy, education, and disabilities influence health disparities and health outcomes. It is important to ensure that research is collaborative and inclusive in order to broaden the reach of future interventions to smaller linguistic minority populations.
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ABSTRACT: To date, there have been efforts towards creating better health information access for Deaf American Sign Language (ASL) users. However, the usability of websites with access to health information in ASL has not been evaluated. Our paper focuses on the usability of four health websites that include ASL videos. We seek to obtain ASL users’ perspectives on the navigation of these ASL-accessible websites, finding the health information that they needed, and perceived ease of understanding ASL video content. ASL users (N=32) were instructed to find specific information on four ASL-accessible websites, and answered questions related to: 1) navigation to find the task, 2) website usability, and 3) ease of understanding ASL video content for each of the four websites. Participants also gave feedback on what they would like to see in an ASL health library website, including the benefit of added captioning and/or signer model to medical illustration of health videos. Participants who had lower health literacy had greater difficulty in finding information on ASL-accessible health websites. This paper also describes the participants’ preferences for an ideal ASL-accessible health website, and concludes with a discussion on the role of accessible websites in promoting health literacy in ASL users.Journal of Health Communication 07/2014; DOI:10.1080/10410236.2013.853226 · 1.61 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Minority women experience health disparities, especially related to diabetes. The purpose of this article is to examine diabetes risk in minority women. A survey design was used to recruit 52 African Americans (AA) and 48 Latina women. Participants described their health, health behaviors, and health literacy. Blood pressure and body mass index were measured. AA women had more diabetes risks than Latinas, and older women had more risks than younger women. All of the women had low health literacy. Women with higher numbers of diabetes risks had lower health literacy. Findings can be used to develop diabetes prevention and education programs.Journal of Community Health Nursing 01/2015; 32(1):12-23. DOI:10.1080/07370016.2015.991664 · 0.65 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Deaf American Sign Language (ASL) users represent a small population at risk for marginalization from research and surveillance activities resulting from cultural, language, and ethical challenges. The Deaf community's view of deafness as a cultural identity, rather than a disability, contradicts the medical community's perception of deafness as a disease or deficiency in need of correction or elimination. These differences continue to have significant cultural and social implications within the Deaf community, resulting in mistrust of research opportunities. Two particularly contentious ethical topics for the Deaf community are the absence of community representation in genetic research and the lack of accessible informed consents and research materials. This article outlines a series of innovative strategies and solutions to these issues, including the importance of community representation and collaboration with researchers studying deaf populations. (Am J Public Health. Published online ahead of print October 17, 2013: e1-e6. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2013.301343).American Journal of Public Health 10/2013; 103(12). DOI:10.2105/AJPH.2013.301343 · 4.23 Impact Factor