Health Literacy Consulting

Health literacy is about mutual understanding. It happens when patients (or caregivers, the public, or anyone on the receiving end of health communication) and providers (clinicians, public health specialists, organizations, and others on the giving end of this communication) truly understand each other. Health literacy can be hard to accomplish.

Helen Osborne can help.

She does this by raising awareness about health literacy, teaching strategies to help, and sharing stories about why this matters. Helen also serves as a plain language writer and editor on a wide range of health materials.

Health Literacy Consultant Helen Osborne
Helen Osborne Health Literacy Communication

Helen Osborne can help you communicate clearly!

Helen Osborne, M.Ed, OTR/L helps helps professionals communicate health information in ways that patients and the public can understand. Helen brings to this work her experience as an occupational therapist, training as an educator, and perspective as a patient and caregiver.


“Thank you for your excellent work on this script as well as all the others! You make the scripts and projects even better. We greatly appreciate your expertise and collaborating with us to improve medical care for those who most need it.”

Aretha Delight Davis MD, JD & Angelo Volandes MD, MPH
Co-founders and chief executives of ACP Decisions

“Everyone who attended your workshop really, really liked it and found it immensely useful. The evaluations were stellar and people thought it really helped them think in new, useful, and concrete ways. We all now understand that we don’t need to be artists to communicate in pictures!”
Jeannie Hess, Community Service Program Liaison
Harvard Medical School
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Health Literacy Out Loud Podcast

Health Literacy Out Loud (HLOL) podcasts are a lot like radio shows. You can listen in as Helen Osborne interviews those in-the-know about health literacy. You will hear why health literacy matters and learn practical ways to help.

  • Parul Bhargava, MD is Professor & Vice-Chair of Laboratory Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). She is a pathologist with subspecialty training in hematology. Dr. Bhargava describes herself as passionate about medical education and has authored or edited numerous academic publications. In this podcast, Dr. Bhargava talks with Helen Osborne about: Diagnostic […]
  • Dr. Emily Tonorezos is Director of the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Office of Cancer Survivorship which is part of the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. Dr. Tonorezos leads NCI’s efforts to address challenges facing cancer survivors and their families. These efforts include preventing or mitigating adverse effects and improving the health and well-being […]

About the Book

Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message, Third Edition (updated 2022) is written for someone who cares a lot about communicating health messages clearly and simply. It is also written for someone to whom health literacy is just one of many projects competing for time and attention. Whether you are a physician, nurse, pharmacist, allied health professional, case manager, public health specialist, practice manager, health educator, student, or family caregiver–this book is for you.

Health Literacy from A to Z, 3rd Edition by Helen Osborne

How-to Tips and Articles

Readable Writing Starts with Good Organization

Where do you begin when writing documents that readers must understand? In my experience, the best place to start is with organization--matching your information to the interests, abilities, and existing knowledge of the intended audience. Here’s how-to: Assemble a...

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Continuum of Care

Health care can happen in many settings, at different times, and with almost infinite pairings of patients, caregivers, and providers. In other words, health care today can happen at all stages of what is commonly referred to as the “continuum of care.” For...

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Confirm Understanding: Feedback

Just because we say something, just because we write it, just because we know this information is important does not necessarily mean that the person we are communicating with will be able to read, relate to, and follow this information. It is vital that we...

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