Health information literacy as an increasingly important component of health literacy

Review Article, Zdr Publ 2013;123(1): 98-103

BARBARA NIEDŹWIEDZKA

Department of Information Science, Institute of Public Health, Jagiellonian University Medical College, Poland

Abstract

The paper presents briefly the evolution and meaning of the term “health literacy” and the growing role of information literacy among health competencies. The growing importance of the latter for the level of citizens’ health literacy is a consequence of the information revolution, and is associated with increasing self-reliance of people in gaining information about health and disease, increasingly beyond the control of medical professionals and in aggressive informational environment. A high level of information literacy, according to the author, may protect against health hazards arising from use of inappropriate or incorrect information, and therefore building health information skills should become an integral part of any health education.

Keywords

information literacy, health knowledge, health literacy.

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