Date of Award


Document Type

Independent Study

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


The need for health literate communication is evident in a changing and complex health care system. Yet, little formal training is available for nurses, physicians, and other health clinicians. Poor communication in the healthcare setting has negative effects on the patient, on the clinician, the health system and the larger community. This literature review identified techniques evident in the literature to produce positive patient and clinician health and communication outcomes. Supported interventions include communication techniques such as motivational interviewing, teach-back, teach-to-goal, the Four Habits Model and the Ask Me 3 model. The impact of such interventions can be measured through in-place measurements such as HCAHPS scores, and through measurement of clinician behavior and confidence in communication. Frameworks for understanding health literacy and the role of communication training are discussed. Nurses are in a distinct position to impact the spread of health literacy education and evidence based communication techniques in the health fields .