Fostering Health Literacy Responsiveness in a Remote Primary Health Care Setting: A Pilot Study

Rachael Laing, Sandra C Thompson, Shandell Elmer, Rohan L Rasiah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Primary healthcare organisations have an important role in addressing health literacy as this is a barrier to accessing and utilising health care. Until recently, no organisational development tool operationalising health literacy in an Australian context existed. This research evaluated the efficacy of the Organisational Health Literacy Responsiveness (Org-HLR) tool and associated assessment process in a primary healthcare organisation in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. This study utilised a sequential explanatory mixed methods research design incorporating the collection and analysis of data in two phases: (1) Pre- and post-survey data and; (2) seven semi-structured interviews. Survey results showed that participants' confidence in core health literacy concepts improved from baseline following the intervention. Analysis of the interview data revealed participants' initial understanding of health literacy was limited, and this impeded organisational responsiveness to health literacy needs. Participants reported the workshop and tool content were relevant to their organisation; they valued involving members from all parts of the organisation and having an external facilitator to ensure the impartiality of the process. External barriers to improving their internal organisational health literacy responsiveness were identified, with participants acknowledging the management style and culture of open communication within the organisation as enablers of change. Participants identified actionable changes to improve their organisational health literacy responsiveness using the process of organisational assessment and change.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2730
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2020


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