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BioMed Central, Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 1(14), 2016

DOI: 10.1186/s12955-016-0471-1



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The impact of health literacy and life style risk factors on health-related quality of life of Australian patients

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This paper is available in a repository.

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Data provided by SHERPA/RoMEO


Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated. ; Background: Limited evidence exists regarding the relationship between health literacy and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in Australian patients from primary care. The objective of this study was to investigate the impact of health literacy on HRQoL in a large sample of patients without known vascular disease or diabetes and to examine whether the difference in HRQoL between low and high health literacy groups was clinically significant. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study of baseline data from a cluster randomised trial. The study included 739 patients from 30 general practices across four Australian states conducted in 2012 and 2013 using the standard Short Form Health Survey (SF-12) version 2. SF-12 physical component score (PCS-12) and mental component score (MCS-12) are derived using the standard US algorithm. Health literacy was measured using the Health Literacy Management Scale (HeLMS). Multilevel regression analysis (patients at level 1 and general practices at level 2) was applied to relate PCS-12 and MCS-12 to patient reported life style risk behaviours including health literacy and demographic factors. Results: Low health literacy patients were more likely to be smokers (12 % vs 6 %, P = 0.005), do insufficient physical activity (63 % vs 47 %, P