Objective. Evaluate health literacy levels in Spanish-speaking Hispanic adults accessing health care services in the Midwest.

Methods. Cross-sectional study of patients (n = 402) at two Midwestern federally qualified health centers. The assessment tool used in this study contained the Short Assessment of Health Literacy-S.

Results. A total of 36% of the participants had a low health literacy level (LHLL). Forty-five percent of males versus 31% of females demonstrated LHLL (p < .05). With respect to education level, 61% with less than a 7th grade education had LHLL compared with 17% with 7th grade education or more (p < .05). Additionally, 29% of the participants of Mexican origin had LHLL contrasted with 55% of the participants of non-Mexican origin (p < .05).

Conclusions. Low levels of health literacy reported in this study are consistent with previous assessments. We observed statistically significant differences in LHLL based on gender, education level, and country of origin.


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pp. 1726-1732
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