Prevention in Focus

Webinar Series

Say “Yes!” to Health Literacy in Cancer Prevention and Control

October 26, 2022
Headshot of Cathy Meade, Ph.D.
Cathy Meade, Ph.D.

Moffitt Cancer Center
University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine

Headshot of Clement K. Gwede, Ph.D.
Clement K. Gwede, Ph.D.

Moffitt Cancer Center
University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine

View the Webinar

About the Webinar

A special Prevention in Focus webinar from the NIH Office of Disease Prevention and the NIH Health Literacy Working Group, in honor of Health Literacy Month.

This webinar calls attention to the importance of health literacy in cancer care with a spotlight on cancer prevention and control. It highlights the benefit of user-centered processes that incorporate a culture and literacy perspective, and the requisite to develop R.E.A.L. (Relatable, Engaging, Actionable, and Literacy) friendly evidence-based cancer interventions.

The impact of community-academic partnerships for improved community health is illustrated through the Tampa Bay Community Cancer Network (TBCCN), a community-academic partnership that serves as a unique springboard to fuel beneficial research and easy-to-understand educational interventions. Drs. Meade and Gwede also provide a snapshot of how community partnerships can advance transformational research and community innovations to unpack health disparities with a lens on health literacy. Grounded in community-based participatory research approaches, a series of TBCCN-informed studies that focus on improving colorectal cancer screening uptake among multicultural, multilingual patients in Federally Qualified Health Centers is presented to “Say YES to Health Literacy.”

About Cathy Meade

Dr. Cathy Meade is a community-minded researcher. She is a nationally recognized leader in areas of health disparities, cancer communications/health literacy, and research education and training. She has been a longstanding voice for recognizing the intersection of culture and literacy in cancer care. She was one of the earliest investigators to conduct studies whereby mismatches were identified between patients’ reading levels and the reading levels of health information. As a member of the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Health Literacy, she helped craft the 2004 report titled “Health Literacy: A Prescription to End Confusion.” Her current research spans cancer prevention to survivorship, and seeks to bring health information, services, and scientific advancements ‘right back to the community’ in ways that are understandable, useful, and practical. A notable outcome of her work is the creation of the TBCCN, a community-academic network, which informs community-driven studies conducted in Moffitt Cancer Center’s catchment area. Dr. Meade’s research is based on a community-based participatory approach that aims to build trustworthy partnerships for improved patient engagement in cancer prevention behaviors (such as improved colorectal cancer screening). This involves creating, testing, and disseminating language and literacy-specific programs, interventions, and messages toward health equity.

About Clement K. Gwede

Dr. Clement K. Gwede is a public health and health equity investigator whose research is primarily fueled by community engagement, community-academic partnerships, and health literacy-informed approaches to develop, test, and implement behavioral interventions for prevention and early detection of colorectal and prostate cancers to eliminate cancer health disparities and improve quality of life. His work has addressed health system, social, cultural, and behavioral determinants of health using multilevel and literacy-appropriate cancer screening interventions in safety-net primary care clinics such as Federally Qualified Health Centers. This research has been supported by grants from the American Cancer Society, National Institute of Health/National Cancer Institute, U.S. Department of Defense, the state of Florida, Florida Blue Foundation, and other sources. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed articles in scholarly journals.

About Health Literacy

Learn more about health literacy and Health Literacy Month at the NIH, including resources and best practices. 

Explore the six Healthy People 2030 objectives related to health literacy that were developed by the Health Communication and Health Information Technology Workgroup. The Healthy People 2030 program is managed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.


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