Altus added to Health Literacy Month videoconference locations

staff reports

More communities have been added to the list of videoconference locations where the public can participate in the Oklahoma Health Equity Campaign (OHEC) meetings for Health Literacy Month.

OHEC is preparing for October’s Health Literacy Month with a meeting Tuesday, Sept. 29 to discuss libraries and health organizations as partners in community (public) health. The public is welcome to attend the meeting being held from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH), 1000 N.E. 10th St., in Oklahoma City in Room 806. Those unable to travel to Oklahoma City will be able to participate via video conference at numerous locations across the state, including Altus.

The Jackson County Health Department is scheduled to link to the video conference. The local health department is located at 401 W. Tamarack Road in Altus.

Health literacy is the ability of a person to obtain, communicate, process, and understand basic health information and services to make appropriate health decisions.

The OHEC is collaborating with the Oklahoma Department of Libraries’ Adult Literacy Office and the Institute of Museum and Library Services to bring Michelle Malizia to Oklahoma.

Malizia has more than 13 years of experience providing instruction in a wide range of topics including grant writing, emerging technologies and health information literacy. She created a workshop for grants and proposal writing in 2002, and has presented it to more than 700 people representing a wide array of organizations such as health departments, libraries, universities, hospitals and community-based groups.

Other guest speakers include Lori Lake, executive director of the Reach Out and Read program, and also Dr. Marny Dunlap who is a pediatrician and an associate professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. She is also the medical director for Reach Out and Read Oklahoma.

Reach Out and Read is an evidence-based pediatric literacy program that partners with providers to “prescribe” books and encourage families to read together. Doctors, nurse practitioners and other medical professionals incorporate the program into regular pediatric checkups by advising parents about the importance of reading aloud and giving developmentally-appropriate books to children.

The meeting will also offer updates concerning housing and public transportation.

For more information about the Oklahoma Health Equity Campaign, visit [] or call Marisa New, Manager, OSDH Health Equity & Resource Opportunities Division, (405) 271-9444 ext. 56410. Locally, for more information contact Karen Testerman at 580-482-7308.

staff reports

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