Recommendation 4-2 The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Indian Health Service, the Health Resources and Services Administration, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration should develop and test approaches to improve health communication that foster healing relationships across culturally diverse populations. This includes investigations that explore the effect of existing and innovative communication approaches on health behaviors, and studies that examine the impact of participatory action and empowerment research strategies for effective penetration of health information at the community level.
Recommendation 5-1 Accreditation requirements for all public and private educational institutions should require the implementation of the National Health Education Standards.
Recommendation 5-2 Educators should take advantage of the opportunity provided by existing reading, writing, reading, oral language skills, and mathematics curricula to incorporate health-related tasks, materials, and examples into existing lesson plans.
Recommendation 5-3 The Health Resources and Services Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in collaboration with the Department of Education, should fund demonstration projects in each state to attain the National Health Education Standards and to meet basic literacy requirements as they apply to health literacy.
Recommendation 5-4 The Department of Education in association with the Department of Health and Human Services should convene task forces comprised of appropriate education, health, and public policy experts to delineate specific, feasible, and effective actions relevant agencies could take to improve health literacy through the nation’s K-12 schools, 2-year and 4-year colleges and universities, and adult and vocational education.
Recommendation 5-5 The National Science Foundation, the Department of Education, and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development should fund research designed to assess the effectiveness of different models of combining health literacy with basic literacy and instruction. The Interagency Education Research Initiative, a federal partnership of these three agencies, should lead this effort to the fullest extent possible.
Recommendation 5-6 Professional schools and professional continuing education programs in health and related fields, including medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, social work, anthropology, nursing, public health, and journalism, should incorporate health literacy into their curricula and areas of competence.
Recommendation 6-1 Health care systems, including private systems, Medicare, Medicaid, the Department of Defense, and the Veterans Administration should develop and support demonstration programs to establish the most effec-