Category: Professional Posters
Purpose: Modern health educational materials are mostly composed of large chunks of text that are difficult to understand for patients with basic literacy skills. Without there being alternative educational resources, these patients lack the proper knowledge to take care of themselves and end up with a lower level of health literacy overall. To combat this, research has been done to prove if the inclusion of visuals can provide higher understanding in patients across all literacy levels. Memes for Health (MfH) improves upon the current state by bringing Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance to the creation of health care imagery.
Methods: Memes for Health utilizes a truncated version of the CDC Clear Communication Guidelines, reducing the CDC Index to three considerations: ‘what is the message,’ ‘what is the call to action,’ and ‘is the information current, accurate, and/or clinically appropriate.’ Volunteer participants gather at Memes for Health Art Salons to discuss a healthcare topic led by a clinician in the field, in order to develop their thoughts on the subject in the context of what is considered current, scientifically accurate, and clinically appropriate. Volunteers develop a message and a call to action that they will try to illustrate using 10 words or fewer. The truncated CDC Index is utilized to review and validate the submissions. Responses are collected from art salon participants utilizing an anonymous open-ended survey. The illustrations are validated using the same anonymous open-ended survey by the Memes for Health Research Board members who did not attend the Art Salon. Illustrations that satisfy multiple criteria, including high correspondence between the anonymous survey results, and a rigorous consideration of the appropriateness of the health messaging, are considered for reproduction and mass distribution as Memes for Health stickers.
Results: Memes for Health has held 2 orientations and 6 art salons since October 2018 resulting in 10 validated illustrations. Three of the nine validated illustrations have been mass produced as stickers. One of these nine is a completed “Meme for Health”, which uses novel technology to expand the message of the illustration.
Conclusion: Through this alternative method of conveying health information, patients will be better able to understand their treatment plans, resulting in improved patient outcomes and quality of life.