Development of a Communication Intervention for Older Adults With Limited Health Literacy: Photo Stories to Support Doctor-Patient Communication

Koops van 't Jagt, R., de Winter, A. F., Reijneveld, S. A., Hoeks, J. C. J. & Jansen, C. J. M., 2016, In : Journal of Health Communication. 21, sup2, p. 69-82 14 p.

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Successful doctor-patient communication relies on appropriate levels of communicative health literacy, the ability to deal with and communicate about health information. This article aims to describe the development of a narrative- and picture-based health literacy intervention intended to support older patients with limited health literacy when communicating during their primary care consultations. We performed a formative evaluation that included a review of the literature and interviews with stakeholders on relevant health literacy issues, qualitative studies with the target group, intervention planning, and a small-scale evaluation. Cocreation with the target group was a major component. Seven photo stories were developed incorporating principles from narrative and social learning theory and covering communication themes and strategies identified during focus group discussions and role-play exercises. The intervention was developed in 3 different formats: 1-page photo stories, narrated video clips using the original photo story pictures, and interactive video clips covering participation and communication during primary care consultations. In our small-scale evaluation, older adults considered the cocreated intervention appealing and comprehensible. The intervention shows promise for improving the health of older adults but needs further evaluation. This study provides a rigorous template for the participatory development of health literacy interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-82
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Health Communication
Issue numbersup2
Publication statusPublished - 2016



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