94% of adults do not have an adequate level of health literacy.

Lack of healthcare literacy is correlated with poorer health outcomes and increased mortality. Source: Ministry of Health, Malaysia

Health Literacy

/helTH ˈli-t(ə-)rə-sē/ noun
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?

Health Literacy

/helTH ˈli-t(ə-)rə-sē/ noun
Health literacy is the ability of a person to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services to make appropriate health decisions to promote good health.

Having an adequate level of health literacy is essential to the health and wellbeing of individuals and communities.

Health literacy is vital because it impacts a person’s health outcomes. A poor level of health literacy is associated with:

Poor health outcomes and higher healthcare costs.
Increased rate of hospitalization, and emergency room visits.
Lower use of preventative services and lower participation in health seeking programs.
Higher rate of chronic diseases; poorer disease management due to medication errors.

In America, only 12% of adults have a proficient level of healthcare literacy.

Source: America’s Health Literacy: Why We Need Accessible Health Information, 2012, US Department of Health & Human Services

In Philippines, less than 7% of elderly people were found to have adequate levels of health literacy.

Source: Correlates of Health Literacy among Filipinos aged 50-70 years old Belonging to Low-Income Families in a Selected Community

In Malaysia, where only 7% of adults were found to have adequate levels of health literacy.

Source: National Health and Morbidity Survey 2015, Ministry of Health, Malaysia

Research shows that health literacy is particularly poor among the elderly, ethnic minority, and low access to resources.

WHAT IS BIOMARK DOING ABOUT HEALTH LITERACY?

BioMark is developing digital products targeted at improving the health literacy of people, both individually and at an organizational level.

BioMark’s goals to improve health literacy is based on pursuing the following strategies:

Increasing access to health information for the public by making our platform free to use.
Making health information accessible and usable by using plain language and localized content.
Developing tools that assist health professionals in improving patient communications.
Helping people keep track of their health data in a simple and effortless way.
Using AI assisted conversations to help answer questions on health information and health services.
Designing proprietary algorithms and programs that make improving health literacy fun and engaging.

Investing in measurement and monitoring

Together with developing our products to promote health literacy, BioMark is measuring and monitoring our progress to ensure that improvements in health literacy are based on solid empirical data and are sustainable on a long-term time horizon. Evaluation is based on utilizing several tools including health literacy surveys and underlying health biomarkers.

Health literacy means empowerment.

By improving health literacy, BioMark aims to empower people as citizens, consumers and patients so that they can better make decisions about their health. Empowerment is multi-faceted. It describes a process through which people gain more control over their lives and their health and its determinants. Empowerment also describes the ability of people or communities to influence their world. Through empowerment, BioMark’s health literacy program hopes to contribute to democratizing the health care systems and improving the health and well-being of individuals and communities in the world.

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