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Differences in health literacy profiles of patients admitted to a public and a private hospital in Melbourne, Australia

Jessup, Rebecca L., Osborne, Richard H., Beauchamp, Alison, Bourne, Allison and Buchbinder, Rachelle 2018, Differences in health literacy profiles of patients admitted to a public and a private hospital in Melbourne, Australia, BMC health services research, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 1-10, doi: 10.1186/s12913-018-2921-4.

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Title Differences in health literacy profiles of patients admitted to a public and a private hospital in Melbourne, Australia
Author(s) Jessup, Rebecca L.ORCID iD for Jessup, Rebecca L. orcid.org/0000-0002-9081-2699
Osborne, Richard H.ORCID iD for Osborne, Richard H. orcid.org/0000-0001-6555-6200
Beauchamp, AlisonORCID iD for Beauchamp, Alison orcid.org/0000-0001-6555-6200
Bourne, Allison
Buchbinder, Rachelle
Journal name BMC health services research
Volume number 18
Issue number 1
Article ID 134
Start page 1
End page 10
Total pages 10
Publisher BioMed Central
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2018-02-22
ISSN 1472-6963
Keyword(s) Equity
Health literacy
Hospitals
Literacy
Quality
Safety
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Health Care Sciences & Services
INCREASING RESPONSE RATES
LOW-INCOME POPULATIONS
CHRONIC DISEASE
OUTCOMES
CARE
DEPRESSION
KNOWLEDGE
RISK
INTERVENTIONS
Health Transformation
Summary Background
Health literacy refers to an individual’s ability to find, understand and use health information in order to promote and maintain health. An individual’s health literacy may also be influenced by the way health care organisations deliver care. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of hospital service type (public versus private) on individual health literacy.

Methods
Two cross-sectional surveys were conducted using the Health Literacy Questionnaire (HLQ), a multi-dimensional self-report instrument covering nine health literacy domains. Recently discharged private patients (n = 3121) were sent the survey in English, public patients (n = 384) were sent the survey in English, Arabic, Chinese, Vietnamese, Italian or Greek. Eligibility included hospitalisation ≥24 h in last 30 days, aged ≥18 years, no cognitive impairment. Odds ratios were used to assess differences between hospital sociodemographic and health related variables. ANOVA and Cohen’s effect sizes compared HLQ scores between hospitals. Chi square and multiple logistic regression were used to determine whether differences between private and public hospital HLQ scores was independent of hospital population sociodemographic differences. ANOVA was used to review associations between HLQ scores and subgroups of demographic, health behaviour and health conditions and these were then compared across the two hospital populations.

Results
Public hospital participants scored lower than private hospital participants on eight of the nine health literacy domains of the HLQ (scores for Active Appraisal did not differ between the two samples). Six domains, five of which in part measure the impact of how care is delivered on health literacy, remained lower among public hospital participants after controlling for age, education, language and income. Across both hospital populations, participants who were smokers, those who had low physical activity, those with depression and/or anxiety and those with 3 or more chronic conditions reported lower scores on some HLQ domains.

Conclusions
Our finding of lower health literacy among patients who had received care at a public hospital in comparison to a private hospital, even after adjustment for sociodemographic and language differences, suggests that private hospitals may possess organisational attributes (environment, structure, values, practices and/or workforce competencies) that result in improved health literacy responsiveness.
Language eng
DOI 10.1186/s12913-018-2921-4
Field of Research 111708 Health and Community Services
1117 Public Health And Health Services
Socio Economic Objective 920205 Health Education and Promotion
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2018, The Authors
Free to Read? Yes
Use Rights Creative Commons Attribution licence
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30108680

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Health and Social Development
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.