CILIPS Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland
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The Use of Health Literacy Tools to Support Remote Consultations

This case study is part of Health Librarians Add Value, a campaign run jointly by NHS Education for Scotland (NES) and CILIPS. It has been provided by Janet Crozier, NES Knowledge Manager. Read other case studies here.

Outline of project

During the Covid-19 pandemic, NES Knowledge Services have been delivering webinars to health and social care staff to explore how health literacy techniques can support staff who are undertaking consultations either by video or telephone call. Since March 2020, 173 people from a variety of staff groups including dietitians, pharmacists, GPNs and those working in social care organisations have attended the webinars, some of which were jointly hosted by the NHS Ayrshire and Arran Health Improvement team. We asked participants to complete the NES/HEE e-learning ‘You Can Make a Difference’, which is hosted on Turas Learn, before attending the webinar and to date over 800 learners have done so. The resource encourages learners to think about how they can use health literacy tools such as teach back, chunk and check, and pictures to improve a person’s health literacy and ultimately make a difference to that person’s health outcomes.


Feedback from health and social care staff:

“I have used chunk and check, which works well and is effective on video/telephone calls, particularly if there are technological issues”

“Focusing on health literacy techniques has been helpful for when doing video or telephone calls with an individual and also their relative/carer. It helps to bring everything together to ensure understanding.”

“I am now using Teach Back on Near Me. I had an elderly patient post-stroke with quite a few medication changes, so going over the changes a few times and using Teach Back was necessary.”

“It will be good to use chunk and check when counselling patients over the phone about their medicines to check their understanding”

“I have done some patient clinics via the telephone. I will try the techniques to ensure that the individuals I am talking with have understood their dietary goals.”

Click here to visit the ‘You Can Make a Difference’ e-learning tool, hosted by Touras Learn

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