What is Health Literacy?

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  • What is Health Literacy?

Health Literacy is about people being able to access, understand and act on health information and services.

The Northern NSW Health Literacy Project is focused on what health professionals and services can do to ensure health information and services are easy to access, understand and act on.

Research tells us that by improving the way we communicate, we can help people to:


Find the right services and doctors

chronic pain

Manage their own chronic health conditions


Get to the places and appointments they need


Take medicine the right way


Fill out health forms and access their online My Health Record

medical history

Share their medical history with their health care team

healthy lifestyle

Keep up a healthy lifestyle


Follow advice about how to look after their own health

We want to improve the way we communicate in three main areas:

  • The places where health care is provided. This includes making sure places are easy to find and get to, and that once you arrive it is clear where you need to go.
  • The people who provide health care. This includes all staff at a health service, like doctors and nurses, allied health and even the people who greet you at the front desk.
  • Health information that makes sense. This includes any written information, like brochures and fact sheets, posters, websites and letters.

The pieces of the Health Literacy puzzle

health literacy puzzle

What we are doing in Northern New South Wales

what we are doing in Northern NSW
What Can I Do?