Saturday, March 17, 2012

Readin'. Writin' and (um) Dyin'?

As if seasoned citizens don't have enough to worry about, it turns out that those prototypical Three R's can also be lifesavers:

"Being unable to read and understand basic health information might have a deadly outcome for older people ... Specifically, the test assessed a person's understanding of written instructions for taking aspirin. About one-third of the participants could not completely understand the instructions"

And of course it's not just aspirin, but the myriad other pills that seniors are likely to be taking. Mixing up an aspirin and a vitamin probably won't be fatal, but doing the same with a blood pressure med and [fill in the blank] just might be.

Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be an easy fix for this. Perhaps senior centers could offer remedial reading comprehension courses.

On the other hand, bet this makes HHS Secretary Shecantbeserious smile.

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