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Development and initial validation of a computer-administered health literacy assessment in Spanish and English: FLIGHT/VIDAS

Authors Ownby RL , Acevedo A, Waldrop-Valverde D, Jacobs RJ, Caballero J, Davenport R, Homs A, Czaja SJ, Loewenstein D

Received 16 May 2013

Accepted for publication 11 June 2013

Published 19 August 2013 Volume 2013:4 Pages 21—35


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Video abstract presented by Raymond Ownby

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Raymond L Ownby,1 Amarilis Acevedo,2 Drenna Waldrop-Valverde,3 Robin J Jacobs,1 Joshua Caballero,4 Rosemary Davenport,1 Ana-Maria Homs,1 Sara J Czaja,5 David Loewenstein5

1Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA; 2Center for Psychological Studies, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA; 3Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA; 4College of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmacy Practice, Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA; 5University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL, USA

Abstract: Current measures of health literacy have been criticized on a number of grounds, including use of a limited range of content, development on small and atypical patient groups, and poor psychometric characteristics. In this paper, we report the development and preliminary validation of a new computer-administered and -scored health literacy measure addressing these limitations. Items in the measure reflect a wide range of content related to health promotion and maintenance as well as care for diseases. The development process has focused on creating a measure that will be useful in both Spanish and English, while not requiring substantial time for clinician training and individual administration and scoring. The items incorporate several formats, including questions based on brief videos, which allow for the assessment of listening comprehension and the skills related to obtaining information on the Internet. In this paper, we report the interim analyses detailing the initial development and pilot testing of the items (phase 1 of the project) in groups of Spanish and English speakers. We then describe phase 2, which included a second round of testing of the items, in new groups of Spanish and English speakers, and evaluation of the new measure's reliability and validity in relation to other measures. Data are presented that show that four scales (general health literacy, numeracy, conceptual knowledge, and listening comprehension), developed through a process of item and factor analyses, have significant relations to existing measures of health literacy.

Keywords: cognition, disparities, item response theory

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