Measuring the relationship between subjective health literacy and access to kidney transplantation among chronic renal patients in Eastern Hungary
Anita Barth1, Gergő József Szőllősi2, Balázs Nemes1.
1Department of Transplantation, Institute of Surgery, University of Debrecen, Faculty of Medicine, Debrecen, Hungary; 2Department of Family and Occupational Medicine, University of Debrecen, Faculty of Public Health , Debrecen, Hungary
Introduction: Adequate health literacy is needed for transplant recipients, however according to our knowledge no studies have examined health literacy among patient with chronic kidney disease in Hungary. The aim of the study is to examine the health literacy of chronic kidney patients in the East-Hungarian region and to identify the factors that may influence it.
Materials and Methods: A total of 255 renal patients aged 18 to 75 years from 8 dialysis centres in the East-Hungarian region participated in our study. We used the Single Item Literacy Screener (SILS) to measure health literacy. Factors influencing health literacy were evaluated using a multivariate logistic regression model which was adjusted for nine explanatory variables as gender, age, education level, ethnicity, previous kidney transplant status, current transplant status, and modality of the dialysis.
Results and Discussion: According to the multivariate regression analysis results, significant differences were observed between health literacy and education level. Patients with tertiary (OR=7.49; p=0.006) and secondary education (OR=3.70; p=0.022) were more likely to have adequate health literacy compared to those with primary education. Moreover previous kidney transplantation seemed to be a borderline-significant factor regarding health literacy. It seems that patients who undergone a previous kidney transplant were more likely to have adequate health literacy compared to those patients who were without it (OR=0.44; p=0.067).
Conclusion: Limited health literacy was associated with lower education level and it seems to have an association with reduced access to kidney transplantation. Further research is required to better understand the relationship between health literacy and access to kidney transplantation in the Hungarian aspect. However if the relationship exists, it suggest that the improvement in the level of health literacy should increase the number of patients on the waiting list and the kidney transplants rates in Hungary as well.
Keywords: health literacy, SILS, kidney transplantation, chronic kidney disease
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