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Interventions to Improve Health among Reproductive-Age Women of Low Health Literacy: A Systematic Review

Vila-Candel, R., Martínez-Arnau, F. M., de la Camara-de las Heras, J. M., Castro-Sanchez, E. ORCID: 0000-0002-3351-9496 and Perez-Ros, P. (2020). Interventions to Improve Health among Reproductive-Age Women of Low Health Literacy: A Systematic Review. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(20), 7405.. doi: 10.3390/ijerph17207405


Background: Limited or low health literacy (HL) has been associated with poor health outcomes, including inadequate self-caring and preventive behaviors. A few studies have systematically summarized the effect of interventions to improve reproductive health and care in women with insufficient HL. The main objective of the study was to investigate health care promotion interventions and examine their effectiveness on women with inadequate HL through a systematic review of randomized controlled trials (RCT).

Methods: RCTs and quasi-experimental studies that assessed HL interventions to improve reproductive health of women with low HL were included. The study protocol was registered with PROSPERO (CRD42020137059).

Results: Of the 292 records initially identified, a total of 6 articles were included for review. Five different HL screening tools were used. Four different interventions were included: educational intervention, communication skills, a multimedia interactive tool, and text adaptation to enhance reading comprehension. Not enough research practice has been conducted on the influence of interventions on HL, and thus, it is difficult to implement evidence-based interventions.

Conclusions: Interventions aiming to benefit and improve HL should consider the complex web of intersectional determinants that end up shaping the opportunities of women to make optimal decisions regarding their health and care, and which may require attention to much more than clinical or service delivery factors.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Publisher Keywords: health literacy; numeracy; reading ability; reading skill; pregnant women; intervention
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health Sciences > Nursing
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2020 11:58
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

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