As a centre for health literacy, Careum aims to achieve health literacy in Switzerland. Careum is active in the key areas of health literacy and focuses on the people, the relevant settings and organisations of health, education and social services and on the specialists who work there.
Health literacy plays an important role when it comes to living a healthy life, treating illnesses effectively, health equality and avoiding unnecessary health costs. It refers to an individual’s ability to make decisions that have a positive effect on health in the context of everyday life at home, in the community, at work, in the healthcare system, on the market and in the political arena (Kickbusch et al. 2005).
However, previous studies show that a large part of the population has problems dealing with health information. Elderly people, people with a migrant background, people with chronic illnesses and people with a low educational and social status in particular find it difficult to locate, understand, assess and use health information relevant to them. Difficulties handling health information can affect health, health behaviour and the use of the healthcare system.
Working and exchanging with national and international partners, Careum’s health literacy team helps boost the health literacy of the population and healthcare organisations.
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