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Title of Journal: J GEN INTERN MED

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Abbravation: Journal of General Internal Medicine

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Springer-Verlag

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10.1007/978-3-658-07334-3

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1525-1497

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Health Literacy, Cognitive Abilities, and Mortality Among Elderly Persons

Authors: David W. Baker, Michael S. Wolf, Joseph Feinglass, Jason A. Thompson,

Publish Date: 2008/03/11
Volume: 23, Issue:6, Pages: 723-726
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Abstract

We conducted a prospective cohort study of 3,260 community-dwelling adults age 65 and older. Participants were interviewed in 1997 and administered the Short Test of Functional Health Literacy in Adults and the Mini Mental Status Examination. Mortality was determined using the National Death Index through 2003.In multivariate models with only literacy (not cognition), the adjusted hazard ratio was 1.50 (95% confidence of interval [CI] 1.24–1.81) for inadequate versus adequate literacy. In multivariate models without literacy, delayed recall of 3 items and the ability to serial subtract numbers were associated with higher mortality (e.g., adjusted hazard ratios [AHR] 1.74 [95% CI 1.30–2.34] for recall of zero versus 3 items, and 1.32 [95% CI 1.09–1.60] for 0–2 vs 5 correct subtractions). In multivariate analysis with both literacy and cognition, the AHRs for the cognition items were similar, but the AHR for inadequate literacy decreased to 1.27 (95% CI 1.03 – 1.57).Obtaining funding—Baker, Feinglass, Wolf; obtaining data and determining deaths from the National Death Index—Feinglass, Baker; analysis of the data and interpretation of the results—Baker, Wolf, Feinglass, Thompson; drafting of the manuscripts—Baker, Wolf, Feinglass; critical feedback and suggested revisions—Thompson.


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