Abstract AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To assess the levels of health literacy of Italian caregivers of patients with heart failure. BACKGROUND: Health literacy is related to patients' health outcomes. Low health literacy has been found in older people with heart failure, and less is known on the health literacy of caregivers whose patients are suffering from heart failure. DESIGN: Observational, multicentre, cross-sectional study. METHODS: From July 2015-May 2016, caregivers were recruited in five hospitals from Central and Southern Italy. To assess health literacy, the Italian version of the Short Test of Functional Health Literacy tool was used. RESULTS: A total of 173 caregivers participated in the research, the majority being females (60.1%), aged between 46-60 years (52.6%) and 96 (55.5%) were from Central Italy. 33.5% of caregivers were patients' children, and 16.2% were paid caregivers of foreign origins. The average level of health literacy was adequate; however, lower levels were found among patients' spouses and those of older age. CONCLUSION: Our results, in contrast with previous studies, showed adequate health literacy levels of caregivers. However, caregivers older in age and with a low education level showed the lowest health literacy, emphasising the need for healthcare workers, to check caregivers' health literacy, before entrusting them with the care of patients. RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: As this research gives, for the first time, an overview on Italian caregivers' levels of health literacy, its results may be used to improve Italian healthcare professionals' knowledge of caregivers' health literacy, before entrusting them with the care of patients.

HEALTH LITERACY AMONG CAREGIVERS OF PATIENTS WITH HEART FAILURE: A MULTICENTER CROSS-SECTIONAL SURVEY

Cicolini G
2017

Abstract

Abstract AIMS AND OBJECTIVES: To assess the levels of health literacy of Italian caregivers of patients with heart failure. BACKGROUND: Health literacy is related to patients' health outcomes. Low health literacy has been found in older people with heart failure, and less is known on the health literacy of caregivers whose patients are suffering from heart failure. DESIGN: Observational, multicentre, cross-sectional study. METHODS: From July 2015-May 2016, caregivers were recruited in five hospitals from Central and Southern Italy. To assess health literacy, the Italian version of the Short Test of Functional Health Literacy tool was used. RESULTS: A total of 173 caregivers participated in the research, the majority being females (60.1%), aged between 46-60 years (52.6%) and 96 (55.5%) were from Central Italy. 33.5% of caregivers were patients' children, and 16.2% were paid caregivers of foreign origins. The average level of health literacy was adequate; however, lower levels were found among patients' spouses and those of older age. CONCLUSION: Our results, in contrast with previous studies, showed adequate health literacy levels of caregivers. However, caregivers older in age and with a low education level showed the lowest health literacy, emphasising the need for healthcare workers, to check caregivers' health literacy, before entrusting them with the care of patients. RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE: As this research gives, for the first time, an overview on Italian caregivers' levels of health literacy, its results may be used to improve Italian healthcare professionals' knowledge of caregivers' health literacy, before entrusting them with the care of patients.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11586/258308
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