Goal of equal opportunities in health materials | by CommunicateHealth | Heart Health Literacy

Old: Above the word “equality” there are 3 doodles of different heights on 3 boxes of the same size. You’re trying to look over a fence to see a baseball game – but the shortest scribble still can’t see over the fence. Above the word “Equity” there are the same 3 doodles behind the same fence – but the short doodle gets 2 boxes, the middle doodle gets 1 box and the big doodle gets no boxes. This way everyone can see over the fence.

Here, at We ❤Health Literacy Headquarters, we love to talk about how health communicators (like you!) can help address health inequalities. And since COVID-19 affects some groups much more than others, resolving inequalities in our health materials is as urgent as ever.

So this week let’s take a closer look at the difference between equal rights and equity capital. George Washington University has one great resource that explains the difference, but we’ll give you a quick summary:

  • Equality means giving equal resources or opportunities to different people or groups. Imagine a board that offers all of its customers a standard pack of groceries.
  • equity capital means giving each person or group the resources or opportunities they need to be a same Result. Perhaps the same board offers bespoke grocery boxes tailored to the household size and nutritional needs of customers – and has a delivery service for people who cannot physically come to the board.

How does that apply to health communication, you ask? Providing the same information to everyone in the same format does not mean everyone has the same access.

Get to know your target group when developing health materials – or better yet, actively involve people from your preferred target group in the process of creating your materials.

Then ask yourself how you can guarantee the same result for as many people as possible – especially those who are faced with structural barriers or disadvantages. For example, depending on your target audience, you could:

The bottom line: To tackle health inequalities, go beyond unified communication materials – and remember that the same resources don’t always produce the same results.

Tweet about it: The same resources do not mean the same results. So go beyond the one size fits all in your # HealthLit materials, @CommunicateHlth says: https://bit.ly/39suANW #HealthDisparities #HealthEquity

Image inspiration courtesy of Interaction institute for social change and Angus Maguire.

Thank You For Reading!

Reference: medium.com


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