Health Literacy and Pregnancy Preparedness in Pregestational Diabetes

  • Endres L
  • Sharp L
  • Haney E
 et al. 
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OBJECTIVE:We investigated the association between functional health literacy and markers of pregnancy preparedness in women with pregestational diabetes.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS:English- and Spanish-speaking pregnant women with pregestational diabetes were recruited. Women completed the Test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults (TOFHLA) short form and a questionnaire. A TOFHLA score of < or =30 was defined as low functional health literacy.

RESULTS:Of 74 women participating in the study, 16 (22%) were classified as having low functional health literacy. Compared with women with adequate health literacy, those with low health literacy were significantly more likely to have an unplanned pregnancy (P = 0.02) and significantly less likely to have either discussed pregnancy ahead of time with an endocrinologist or obstetrician (P = 0.01) or taken folic acid (P = 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:The results of this study suggest that low functional health literacy among women with pregestational diabetes is associated with several factors that may adversely impact birth outcomes.

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