Medication and health literacy - workplace assessment tool

Communication and Health Literacy

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The structure and content of this assessment tool is influenced by D DeWalt et al. Health Literacy Universal Precautions Toolkit, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville MD, 2014, viewed 21 July 2014,


Select one answer that most accurately describes your Service:

  • Doing well:  Our service is doing this well
  • Could be better:  Our service is doing this, but could do it better
  • Not doing:  Our service is not doing this
  • Not sure or N/A:  I don't know the answer, or it is not applicable to our service
No.QuestionDoing wellCould be betterNot doingNot sure / NA


Staff use plain, everyday language



Staff create an environment that encourages people to ask questions and be involved in their care



Medical or pharmacy staff review medications with clients at least once a year and after significant medical events



Clinical staff discuss ways to remember medication regimes and offer help setting up a system (for example, a pill box or chart)



Clinical staff confirm they have explained medications and medication regimes effectively, using the Teach-back method or similar



Clinical staff use unambiguous language when giving instructions, and avoid or explain phrases like:

  • take on an empty stomach
  • regular dosage essential
  • complete the whole course
  • take four times a day


Staff provide written information tailored to the person's needs, explaining their medications and medication regimes


January 2019