Specialty Profile: Health Literacy
Specialty Profile
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This month’s specialty profile is of Health Literacy, which was the focus of the fourth issue of the inaugural volume of Doody’s Special Topics Lists published on July 1. Doody’s Special Topics Lists is the newest free feature for Doody’s Core Titles and Doody’s Review Service subscribers.  

The COVID-19 pandemic provides fertile ground for examining the importance of health literacy. First, the general public has a continuous need to find accurate and up-to-date information about safety precautions, restrictions, symptoms, and vaccines. Second, patients and their families need to navigate different levels of the healthcare system to get tested, receive treatment, and finance their care. Third, practitioners need to be able to meet the information and health needs of a variety of patient populations with varied levels of experience interacting with health professionals. Successfully navigating all these responses to the pandemic requires health literacy skills, and each individual’s approach to acquiring and expressing these skills inevitably will be different. 

The Doody’s Special Topics List conceptualizes “health literacy” as a multidisciplinary specialty that incorporates principles of cultural awareness in healthcare; clinician communication; navigating health insurance; social media and health information; gender-inclusive care; patient empowerment; validating caregiver relationships; and more. Titles on the list target audiences that range from general consumers to librarians to healthcare practitioners, including a variety of medical, nursing, and allied health professionals. Many of the books on the list aim to provide practical ways of improving health literacy among or working within specific health populations. 

Selected by experienced librarians with backgrounds in promoting health literacy and developing related collections, the list is composed of 58 titles from 34 publishers. The list prices of the titles range from $14.99 to $320.00, with an average price of $75.17. Ten of the titles were selected for Doody’s Core Titles 2021, four of which are Essential Purchase Titles. Eighteen of the titles have been reviewed by experts in Doody’s Review Service and the copyright dates range from 2010 to 2022, with one canonical title that was published in 1997.  

Doody’s Review Service subscribers can access the list by clicking here and logging in to your account.  Doody’s Core Titles customers can access the list by clicking here and logging into your account. You also may be able to access the list through one of our licensing partners: EBSCO, Rittenhouse, Matthews, and Ovid. If you’re not sure about how you can get access, please contact Customer Service and we’ll gladly assist you.  

We are excited to begin work on the first issue of the second volume of Doody’s Special Topics Lists, due to publish on October 1, which will take a closer look at vaccination resources. 

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