Two major reports conclude that nearly half the adults in the United
States have trouble interpreting medical information, thus jeopardizing their
health and inflating costs while complicating the work of health professionals,
conclude two major reports.
Consent forms, prescription drug directions, and oral instructions to
patients are often communicated in language more complex than the average
comprehension level of US adults, conclude both studies, one from the Agency
for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the second from the Institute
of Medicine (IOM).
Vastag B. Low Health Literacy Called a Major Problem. JAMA. 2004;291(18):2181-2182. doi:10.1001/jama.291.18.2181