Nearly nine out of 10 adults have difficulty using everyday health information according to the U.S. Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. The reversal of this statistic is the goal of the Healthy Literacy theme for National Health Education Week, Oct. 16-22, 2011.
“Health literacy includes the ability to understand instructions on prescription drug bottles, medical education brochures, directions given by your doctor, consent forms, and decisions concerning your own healthcare as well as the healthcare of loved ones,” said David H. Stone, MD, a member of the Society for Vascular Surgery®.
As the national healthcare discussion continues, health illiteracy remains linked to poor health outcomes and higher rates of hospitalization according to the HHS’ Fact Sheet: Health Literacy and Health Outcomes.
As a vascular surgeon, Dr. Stone understands the importance of easy-to-understand patient information.
The Society for Vascular Surgery® website, VascularWeb.org, features free, print and electronic resources that explain vascular health conditions and treatment options.
- 36 patient education pages that clarify topics such as: angiograms, angioplasty stenting, stroke, and surgical bypass.
- 12 fliers - available in both English and Spanish - on health topics such as, What is Vascular Disease?, When Should You See a Vascular Surgeon?, and Smoking and Vascular Disease.
- A 16-page Vascular Health Activity Book for children, ages five through 12, featuring word search puzzles that illustrate the role of diet and exercise in vascular health.
- 60 podcasts presented by doctors who explain leg pain, aneurysms, varicose veins and pregnancy, wounds, and gender and ethnic differences in vascular diseases.
“Vascular specialists see the effects of smoking, lack of exercise, and obesity on the body’s blood supply system,” said Dr. Stone. “That’s why we encourage early detection and prevention of vascular health conditions through utilization of this free, online vascular health library.”
For vascular health information, visit: VascularWeb.org.
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About the Society for Vascular Surgery®
The Society for Vascular Surgery® (SVS) is a not-for-profit professional medical society, composed primarily of vascular surgeons, that seeks to advance excellence and innovation in vascular health through education, advocacy, research, and public awareness. SVS is the national advocate for 3,500 specialty-trained vascular surgeons and other medical professionals who are dedicated to the prevention and cure of vascular disease. Visit its Web site at VascularWeb.org®. Follow SVS on Twitter and Facebook.