June 27, 2019

Representative Levin Introduces Bipartisan Resolution to Establish October 1st as National Health Literacy Day

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Levin (D-CA) introduced a bipartisan resolution with Representative Greg Gianforte (R-MT) to establish October 1st as National Health Literacy Day. The resolution encourages individuals to assess their health knowledge and history, and urges the Secretary of Health and Human Services to adopt tools and incentives to improve health literacy.

“Too many families are struggling to cover their medical bills and make ends meet, which is why we must do more to drive down health care costs and help families make smarter health decisions,” said Representative Levin. “There is a proven connection between poor health literacy and higher hospitalization rates, greater emergency room use, poorer overall health status, and higher mortality. Ultimately, lowering health care costs and improving health outcomes is paramount, and this resolution would help us achieve those goals.”

“Empowering people through health education can result in better outcomes and more affordable care,” said Representative Gianforte. “National Health Literacy Day will be an opportunity to promote helpful information and resources so families and individuals can make good choices about their care and live healthier lives.”

Health literacy is defined as the degree to which individuals have the capacity to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions. The majority of adults have intermediate health literacy while more than 75 million adults have basic or below basic health literacy, costing the US economy between $106 billion to $236 billion annually.