Health Brief No. 34: Health Literacy in Genesee County (February 2014)

The Health Literacy of America’s Adults reported that about 9 out of 10 American adults have some problems with understanding health information. Genesee Health Plan, Genesee Health System, Genesee Community Health Center, and the Flint public library have health instructors to help you find the health information you may need. Personal Action Toward Health’s (PATH) goal is to offer clinics for people to learn how to manage personal illnesses[1]. The Hurley Medical Center is another resource in the Flint-Genesee County area that offers Health Fairs, Diabetes Education Programs, and several other community programs to try to improve the health of their community. The Genesee County Health Department provides speakers and other information to the community.


 The Speak To Your Health! Community Survey is a resource that provides information about health literacy in Genesee County. According to the 2011 survey:

  • 83% of Genesee County residents reported that they get information about health issues from their doctor.
  • While, 15% of residents reported that they get information about health issues from medical handbooks and 36% of residents get information about health issues from the Internet.
  • 81% Genesee County residents reported that it has been within the last 12 months since their last visit to a doctor, nurse, or other health professional for a routine checkup.
  • 22% of residents suggested there was a time during the last 12 months when they needed to see a doctor, nurse, or other health professional, but could not because of the cost.


  • Check with a doctor or health professional to discuss any health concerns.
  • Find medical manuals or health magazines to improve your understanding of health information.
  • Attend a health fair or a community group to find more information on how to identify possible health problems.
  • Review the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Marketing Plain Language Thesaurus for Health Communication for clear definitions of medical vocabulary.



[1]Healthy Programs in Michigan, Personal Action Toward Health (PATH):

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