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Health Literacy and Seniors - 2010

Phase III - Health Literacy Research Project
This research project was phase III of a three-phase project. This phase looked at the needs of seniors when accessing health information. Phase I looked at the needs of adult learners when accessing health information. Phase II looked at the needs of health professionals when communicating health information.
Phase I - Adult Learners
Phase II - Health Professionals
The PEI Literacy Alliance conducted a research project to determine the needs of seniors when they are accessing general information and health specific information.  We worked with an advisory committee to determine what methodology to use and what seniors to target.

We held four English and two French focus groups across the Island. Two focus groups were held in urban areas (Charlottetown and Summerside) and four in rural areas (Tignish, O'Leary, Wellington, and Souris).

The committee worked together to finalize three key questions to ask each focus group:

  1. If someone new moved to your community and asked you to help them find out about what is available in your community, what would you say?
  2. So now we are going to focus on health information. Who do you contact or where do you go to get health information?
  3. What has been your experience getting and using health information? What would make it better?

Summary of Findings:

The key barriers seniors face when accessing health information are:
  1. Literacy and essential skills issues
  2. Wait times being too long
  3. Limited access
  4. Isolation
  5. Doctors not spending enough time with them
  6. Poor communication
  7. Transportation issues
  8. Physical and mental disabilities

Here are the full research findings - Research Report - Phase III

This research phase was funded by the PEI Seniors’ Secretariat and the PGI Golf Tournament for Literacy

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My name is Terry Affleck and I learned to read at the age of 63 and today at 65 I am enrolled at Holland College to prepare for my GED. More...

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