Welcome and Plenary - Coronavirus and Health Literacy/Health Equity: How Are We Responding?

Welcome/ Conference Overview 

Michael Villaire, MSLM
Institute for Healthcare Advancement 

Plenary - Coronavirus and Health Literacy/Health Equity: How Are We Responding? 

The COVID-19 pandemic is upon us. How has the health literacy community responded? Have we taken a leadership role, using our knowledge and skills to ensure clear, effective communication, work to reduce health disparities, and advance health equity? When this pandemic is behind us—if it ever is—what will be our legacy?
In this session, we hear about action in four key domains:

  • Research
  • Practice
  • Policy
  • Advocacy

In this plenary, we will discuss efforts taken by members of the health literacy community to contribute solutions to challenges brought up by the pandemic. This session will stimulate creative thinking for an interactive experience each day during the conference, wherein conference attendees can share ideas on how to continue this work well after this conference has ended
Objectives:

  • Identify at least one way to take a leadership role during the pandemic
  • Discuss at least one strategy to create partnerships to address issues raised by the pandemic
  • Examine ways to advance health literacy and health equity and/or reduce health disparities


Michael Villaire, MSLM

President/CEO - Institute for Healthcare Advancement

Michael Villaire, MSLM, is President and Chief Executive Officer for the Institute for Healthcare Advancement, a nonprofit healthcare 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to empowering people to better health, with a major mission emphasis on health literacy.  

Mr. Villaire has written numerous articles on various aspects of health literacy, and lectures nationally on health literacy. He is co-author of the textbook, Health Literacy in Primary Care: A Clinician’s Guide, published by Springer in 2007, and the self-help health book, What To Do When Your Child Is Heavy, published by IHA in 2009. 

His background includes 20 years as managing editor for peer-reviewed journals in nursing and medicine, hospital publications, physician news magazines, and an online healthcare portal experiment for WebMD.  He has helped redesign and launch several medical and nursing journals, and managed the development of a multimedia, interactive curriculum in critical care. 

Mr. Villaire earned his baccalaureate degrees in English (Journalism) and in Communications from Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Mich.  He earned his Master’s of Science in Organizational Leadership and Management from the University of La Verne, La Verne, Calif., in 2006. His thesis examined health literacy in community clinics in regard to adequacy of patient education materials.


Viki Lorraine, MS

Education Consultant, Michigan Department of Education

Whether teaching patient-centered communication at a medical school, teaching staff to deliver English as a Second Language programming, or working with communities to increase access to healthy foods, for the past 30 years Viki Lorraine’s work has focused on making sure verbal and written communication can be used and understood by all audiences.
Recognizing that plain language is a fundamental social justice issue, Viki has provided plain language and health literacy education for staff across many state departments and at national, state and local conferences.
Born and raised in Flint, Viki often says that the best parts of her are the product of being a Flint kid.

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Monday, July 20th Welcome and Conference Overview - Plenary: Coronavirus and Health Literacy/Health Equity: How Are We Respond
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Select the "View On-Demand Recording" button to begin. The COVID-19 pandemic is upon us. How has the health literacy community responded? Have we taken a leadership role? Have we used our knowledge and skills to ensure clear, effective communication? Have we worked to reduce health disparities and advance health equity? When this pandemic is behind us—if it ever is—what will be our legacy?
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