Federal Funding for Health Literacy over a 10-Year Period

Patrick Weld, M.S.W., M.P.A., L.G.S.W., of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), with the assistance of K. Vish Visnawath, Ph.D., also of NCI, provided the committee with a table of federal funding of health literacy-related projects over the past 10 years. The data were derived from a search of the NIH CRISP database; searches for each fiscal year from 1993 to 2002 used the following operands: “health literacy,” “health and literacy,” “health and readability,” and “literacy and readability.” The grants retrieved were examined for relevance to the field of health literacy, and financial information was obtained.

Results were then downloaded into Portfolio Management Application software developed by Department of Cancer Control and Population Science of the National Institutes of Health for identification and deletion of duplicate grants, and linkage to financial data. A total of 906 grants for the 10-year period were identified. Because of a technology change in 1995–1996, 229 of the grants could not be linked to financial data. Thus, the early years of the search results (1993–1996) contain missing financial data. While Drs. Weld and Viswanath were able to identify all of the missing grants, further work to access the financial data for those grants was not successful.

The information for the remaining 667 grants available was downloaded into an Excel spreadsheet for further manipulation. The awarded grants were identified, and unawarded grants were excluded, bringing the final count of grants to 565. This information has been compiled into yearly federal grant funding (new and continuing grants) over a 10-year period, and is presented in Chapter 6.


Matthews TL, Sewell JC. 2002. State Official’s Guide to Health Literacy. Lexington, KY: The Council of State Governments.

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