Communication checklist

Communication and Health Literacy

Use this communication checklist to help you remember health literacy principles when communicating verbally or in writing.

For more information about this tool and the evidence that has supported its development, go to the health literacy website

The contents of the checklist are listed below.

Checklist - text version

when I speak I'M HEARING

  • Introductions
  • Main points (no more than 3 key messages)
  • Helpful questions
  • Everyday language (plain words, no jargon)
  • Ask, tell, ask’
  • Real life and relevant examples
  • Informal tone and slow pace
  • Need for support identified (eg visual aids, prompts, family)
  • Give a summary

I'M SEEING in what I’ve written

  • Involvement by my audience in the planning and the writing
  • Main points (no more than 3 key messages)
  • Short sentences (about 20 words)
  • Easy to read, understandable (grade 6-8 reading level)
  • Everyday words or explanation of new/unfamiliar
  • Information sources and links
  • Neat, clear, friendly format
  • Graphics that explain and are relevant

Funded by Primary Health Tasmania under the Primary Health Networks Program – an Australian Government initiative. Developed in partnership with the Tasmanian Government Department of Health and Human Services and the University of Tasmania.