Joint Commission Looking For Input From Health Literacy Community

This information has been been posted on several listservs in recent weeks.

“The Joint Commission is seeking input from hospitals on health literacy needs. This is a great opportunity to let them know what hospital libraries are doing.

The Joint Commission, with funding from The Commonwealth Fund, is developing proposed accreditation requirements for hospitals to advance effective communication, cultural competence, and patient-centered care.

This 18-month project will explore how diversity, culture, language, and health literacy issues can be better incorporated into current Joint Commission standards or drafted into new requirements. In conjunction with the proposed requirements, The Joint Commission is developing an implementation guide that will help hospitals meet the proposed requirements and provide best practice information and educational resources and tools. Additional project information can be accessed at:<

As experts and stakeholders in the health literacy community, The Joint Commission is requesting your input on how hospitals are currently addressing health literacy issues and what resources and tools can provide guidance for improvement. Specific questions will be posted on Wednesday, but please feel free to contact me directly with any feedback or information.

Christina L. Cordero, PhD, MPH

Project Manager

Division of Standards and Survey Methods The Joint Commission One Renaissance Boulevard Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181

Phone: 630-792-5845

Fax: 630-792-4845

email: ccordero at



There are the specific questions that Dr. Cordero, from the Joint Commission, would like answerd:

1 – How are health literacy needs currently addressed in hospitals?

2 – Are there any recommended methods/tools/resources for assessing health literacy needs that can be used in hospitals?

3 – How do hospitals currently assess a patient’s understanding of information?

4 – Are there any recommended methods/tools/resources for assessing a patient’s understanding of information in the hospital?


For some background, watch the webcast of Dr. Cordero’s presentation at the Wisconsin Literacy 2009 Health Literacy Summit:

Her presentation is the second one listed and the slides to her PowerPoint are also available.


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