Inclusion of People with Intellectual Disabilities in Health Literacy: Lessons Learned from Three Participative Projects for Future Initiatives
Autorin/Autor: Latteck Ä-D; Bruland D
Background: People with intellectual disabilities (IDs) constitute a high-risk group in relation to several diseases. Promoting their health literacy (HL) could be highly beneficial in the management of health information and making informed decisions. However, there are varying ranges of cognitive, communication and literacy levels in people with IDs. According to our literature review, a HL concept for this target group has not been adequately conceptualized.
Methods: To increase knowledge about the target group, adapted HL results from three innovative (research) projects are presented.
Results: The key factors are: a) target group orientation; b) social context and everyday life; c) individual resources, like communication and literacy levels; d) a multi-modal strategy to strengthen HL; and e) the self-determination and participation of people with IDs.
Conclusions: The projects illustrate that the HL of people with IDs has been successfully addressed by taking these key factors into account. A target-group-orientated HL concept could affect more than positive health outcomes; it could also empower a high-risk group in relation to health problems. However, to develop successful action concepts and strategies, valid data are crucial. The heterogeneity of people with IDs is one of the biggest challenges in obtaining such data. Future studies will need to face these challenges.