Why Health Literacy
People who work in health care know how to provide superior care to others, but sometimes don't take the time to care for themselves. We may become so involved in our work as health care professionals that we don't remember we need to do the same things as everyone else to maintain our own health.
As an organization committed to health care excellence -- for our patients as well as for our employees -- BJC has become more focused on health literacy.
Health literacy means both knowing how to foster health and prevent disease, and taking the appropriate actions to do so. Steps such as eating nutritious foods; not smoking; maintaining a healthy weight; exercising regularly; monitoring blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels; managing stress; and undergoing needed diagnostic screening tests can make tremendous differences in the quality and length of our lives. In fact, the Institute of Medicine has identified health literacy as one of the nation's top priorities in health care.
Today, we have the tools and information to take responsibility for our own health and serve as our own primary caregivers. But that doesn't mean we need to go it alone. Getting the support of your family, friends and co-workers is key to making successful lifestyle changes. And, BJC will be there to help.