NSW Local Health Districts examples

Several Local Health Districts (LHDs) have shown leadership in addressing health literacy. The CEC is delighted to showcase these examples.

ISLHD's leadership and commitment to improving health literacy has led to system wide change. Since 2013, they have been taking steps to build capacity across their system. A health literacy team was established within the Clinical Governance Unit to lead the process.

Focus areas


For more information, email ISLHD.

The Northern NSW Health Literacy Project is a joint project between the Northern NSW Local Health District and the North Coast Primary Health Network which aims to:

  • Develop health information that is easy to access, understand and act on.
  • Support knowledge, empowerment and self-management of chronic health conditions.
  • Develop the skills and capabilities of the health workforce to improve communication with people in their care.

Focus areas

  • The Northern NSW Health Literacy Handbook
  • The Northern NSW Health Literacy Website with resources for staff and consumers:
  • Health Literacy Workshops for staff, students and community members
  • Co-design of resources.

Case study: Making wayfinding easier at Byron Central Hospital

The Health Literacy Officer joined the Work Health and Safety Team to review how easy it was to get around the new Byron Central Hospital site. They consulted staff and conducted a walkthrough activity with consumers. The end result was an action plan for wayfinding improvement to meet the needs of consumers using the facility.

For more information about The Northern NSW Health Literacy Project, or to get in touch, visit their website.

Focus areas

  • The Consumer Health Information and Education Resources Business Rule (CHIER) guides staff to work with consumers to identify their health information needs, key messages and how best to communicate these in ways that consumers can understand.
  • Production of an online learning package about Teach Back, as a partnership with Deakin University. Teach back is a simple yet effective communication tool used to check understanding. It can be used in clinical and non-clinical contexts
  • Sponsorship of the Multicultural Health Service to review translated consumer resources
  • Promotion of healthy literacy for new and emerging communities through Multicultural Health Week. Resources for health professionals and communities are available on their website.

WSLHD has partnered with the University of Sydney's Health Literacy Lab to create a Health literacy hub. Its goal is to make healthy choices easier for everyone by connecting people to information and ideas to improve health. The hub is for;

  • Consumer/community members – practical advice for patient and consumers about talking to health professionals, finding a health service and accessing trustworthy health information.
  • Health professionals, including staff, researchers and students.

A community of practice is run from the Western Sydney Health Literacy hub. For more information and contact details, visit their website.

We invite others to share their health literacy work to enable a learning culture across NSW Health. Please email us with examples.