Do you need a Health Content Checkup?

Health communication isn’t healthy. More than half of UK adults (6 in 10!) don’t understand the health information that’s provided to them.

And it’s not just the UK, health literacy statistics consistently show that we too often overestimate the ability of Jo Public to comprehend the health-related information that we provide to them, whichever part of the world they happen to be in.

Quick question then: how do you know if your materials are hitting or missing the mark? Perhaps it just looks good and ‘reads well’ to you. But, given the opening statistic, is that gut feeling and self-assessment really good enough?

We often get approached by organisations who want an objective measure of what ‘good’ looks like and guidance on how to consistently produce effective health content. To these people, we have a simple solution – our Health Content Checkup.

An evidence-backed tool

If you’d spent as much time as us trawling the literature, you’ll know that there are a LOT of tools out there to help evaluate health and patient materials. The problem for people without background knowledge of these tools is that they sit in the literature and aren’t widely applied.

And even when they’re applied, a score from an obscure academic tool isn’t likely to give you much of an idea of how you can actually improve your materials and make them more likely to create comprehension or action.

That’s where our Health Content Checkup comes in. We’ve designed an evaluation process that takes in the common themes from several validated tools and other research to provide our clients with a practically focussed analysis on how their materials stack up against the evidence of usable health content.

The Checkup looks at three core domains, each made up of specific subdomains:

The anatomy of usable health information

The comprehensive Checkup gives health content writers, editors, designers and commissioners an in-depth understanding of key evidence on health literacy and how this applies to their health materials.

Crucially, it  provides actionable insight into how to improve the usability of each material for men and women of varying health literacy capabilities.

These insights have universal relevance for health content, so can be applied beyond the core materials that have been assessed.

We also provide links to specific tools and research throughout the checkup for those hungry to learn more!

That’s just a quick overview. Sound interesting? Then get in touch and we’d be happy to talk, and show you some examples.