Building Awareness and Action Ideas

We want to help you promote health literacy by building awareness and creating action events or activities. Below we included some ideas to help you in your planning.

We also encourage you to share your ideas on how you, your team, or your organization is participating in Health Literacy Month. We will keep this activity list so others can learn from your experiences.

Action Ideas from the Health Literacy Month Handbook

In Helen Osborne's "Health Literacy Month Handbook: The Event Planning Guide For Health Literacy Advocates", she notes several ways that people could promote health literacy during health literacy month, depending on interests, resources and community needs. Here are her ideas:

  • Hospitals may host health literacy educational workshops for their employees or the general public.
  • Senior centers often run prescription safety sessions.
  • A literacy program might sponsor a health literacy fair.
  • A library can display samples of effective consumer health information.
  • A school may publish a health literacy newsletter.
  • Employers sometimes sponsor educational programs for employees focusing on wellness and disease prevention.

Download the handbook here to help you plan your event!

Action Ideas from Past Discussion List Contributors

Contributor Organization Action Idea
Katherine Leath & Tonilee Jackson-Price, MS, CHES UAMS Center for Health Literacy #Plainpledge™ is the name for their month-long social media awareness campaign. They asked people to post selfies holding cards that have a difficult to understand health word that they pledged not to use.
Anna Allen Say Ah! Dedicated Health Literacy Month to supporting Janet Ohene-Frempong (and others!) work to Get Out the Vote (#GOTV). Posted on social media platforms about important state voter registration deadlines.
Carolyn Cutilli PhD RN NPD-BC Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania Focusing on telemedicine, they presented a virtual presentation.
Iris Feinberg The Georgia Alliance for Health Literacy and the Adult Literacy Research Center at Georgia State University (GSU) Sponsored a lunch time event with the Law and Health Society at GSU, presenting "From Coverage to Care: Advancing Equity through Health Literacy".
Geri Lynn Baumblett Emmi Solutions Created a blog series where people from different communities contribute, interact, and get exposure to each other – including patients, clinicians, decision scientists, behavioral economists, journalists, and family caregivers.
Hope Schwanhausser, MPH, EdS Carolinas HeatlhCare System Created an online health literacy quiz for employees.
Krista Wright and Angie Knackstedt Children’s Mercy Hospital & Clinics Created health literacy hero t-shirts for committee members. Hosted a Champions luncheon for the hospital president, vice-presidents and department managers. Displayed information on health literacy and teach-back to staff, families and visitors using stickers and handouts in English and Spanish. Gave a hospital-wide Hero award to an employee who utilized health literacy principles to provide exceptional communication.

Share Your Action Ideas

Please share how you, your team, or your organization is helping to build awareness about Health Literacy Month so others can learn from your experiences.

Click Here to Share Your Action Idea

  • RE: Wednesday Question: Your HL Month Plans?

    Hello Ms. McKinney and All, For Health Literacy, myself (pharmacist) and culinary chef partner will be kick starting our CDC National Diabetes Prevention Program. We have more information on our program here ( I look forward to reading our members initiatives!

  • RE: Wednesday Question: Your HL Month Plans?

    Our Health Literacy Workgroup created a quiz about Health Literacy that staff can take to help them get them in the mindset (and are entered into a drawing for a prize if they complete it), and also a Health Literacy Hero award that staff can nominate themselves or a coworker for to recognize someone who has started taking steps to improve their communications with patients. We're also posting plain language before and afters--examples of text we have edited--that highlight certain plain language principles like active voice, grouping/chunking, ...

  • RE: Wednesday Question: Your HL Month Plans?

    Julie, This is our 1st time. The health literacy task force was formed in November 2020 so this will be our first health literacy month celebration. Amy​​

  • RE: Wednesday Question: Your HL Month Plans?

    Wow, Amy that sounds fantastic! Have you done any of these activities before? How receptive and engaged have the different department s been?