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Title:  The Health Literacy of America’s Adults: Results from the 2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy
Description: The Health Literacy of America’s Adults is the first release of the National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL) health literacy results. The results are based on assessment tasks designed specifically to measure the health literacy of adults living in the United States. Health literacy was reported using four performance levels: Below Basic, Basic, Intermediate, and Proficient. The majority of adults (53 percent) had Intermediate health literacy. About 22 percent had Basic and 14 percent had Below Basic health literacy. Relationships between health literacy and background variables (such as educational attainment, age, race/ethnicity, where adults get information about health issues, and health insurance coverage) were also examined and reported. For example, adults with Below Basic or Basic health literacy were less likely than adults with higher health literacy to get information about health issues from written sources (newspapers, magazines, books, brochures, or the Internet) and more likely than adults with higher health literacy to get a lot of information about health issues from radio and television.
Online Availability:
Cover Date: September 2006
Web Release: September 6, 2006
Print Release: September 6, 2006
Publication #: NCES 2006483
General Ordering Information
Center/Program: NCES
Authors: Mark Kutner, Elizabeth Greenberg, Ying Jin, Christine Paulsen
Type of Product: Statistical Analysis Report
Survey/Program Areas: National Assessments of Adult Literacy (NAAL)
Questions: For questions about the content of this Statistical Analysis Report, please contact:
Sheida E. White.
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National Center for Education Statistics -
U.S. Department of Education