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About the Summit


As we propel into the future, one thing becomes increasingly clear: health literacy is not just a luxury, but an absolute necessity. In a world where information about health is omnipresent in people`s information ecosystems and their everyday life’s, it is imperative for people and systems to be capable of deciphering what's truly beneficial for our well-being and deliver the best action to promote and maintain good health outcomes.

Health literacy represents the personal competencies and organizational structures, resources and commitment which enable people to access, understand, appraise and use information and services in ways which promote and maintain good health.

– WHO, 2021

Imagine a future where everyone is equipped with these competencies to understand their own health needs, make informed decisions about health promotion, treatments, engage in communication and interaction with health professionals, and navigate complex healthcare systems with ease. This goes hand in hand with organizations that respond to individual`s health literacy needs, that help people achieve the best health outcomes, and make sure to provide equitable health services for all. That's the power of health literacy.

But it doesn't stop there. In our rapidly evolving world, new health challenges emerge constantly – from novel diseases to groundbreaking treatments. Health literacy isn't just about understanding the basics. but also becoming a critical thinker; it's about staying ahead of the curve, adapting to new information, and making choices that promote long-term wellness.

As technology continues to revolutionize healthcare, the importance of health literacy only increases. From telemedicine to personalized medicine, from personal online health information seeking to digital patient records, individuals must be empowered to harness these advancements to optimize their health outcomes.

Ensuring planetary health is essential for creating a sustainable future. This involves balancing human needs with the capacity of the planet to support and sustain life over the long term. Governments, academia, health systems, industry, and civil society must be prepared to develop and accommodate organizational health literacy to maintain and improve the health of people and the planet.

Today, health literacy has long constituted itself as a cornerstone of a thriving society – fostering healthier individuals, stronger communities, and a brighter tomorrow. So, let's embrace the journey towards a future where skills for managing and applying health information is our greatest asset and good health is within everyone's reach.

We welcome you in Rotterdam 18-20 September 2024 to the Global Health Literacy Summit where the vibrant health literacy community will join forces to shape the future agenda of health literacy. You can be a funding and endorsing partner, a presenter, an exhibitor or a participant - no matter which role you choose - your contribution will help us move the needle in the positive direction.

On behalf of the IHLA Executive Board, the Steering Committee, and the Summit Programme Committee we welcome you to this unique experience!

– Kristine Sørensen, President

About the Global Health Literacy Summit

The 2nd Global Health Literacy Summit (GHLS) hosted by the International Health Literacy Association (IHLA), is the first of its kind. It brings together over hundreds of researchers, decision-makers, and practitioners to explore health literacy in all its multiple dimensions. 

Health literacy is an asset for individuals, communities, organizations, systems and societies. The goal of the Global Health Literacy Summit is to:

Bring together health literacy advocates from all around the globe

Present research
and foster knowledge exchange 

Explore emerging and existing policy and strategies

Promote action to advance health literacy for all

2024 Summit

The 2024 Global Health Literacy Summit is organized by the International Health Literacy Association, together with Careum and the Dutch Health Literacy Alliance. It will take place 18-20 September 2024 in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

The Global Health Literacy Summit is open to all and it will be an event where the vibrant health literacy community comes together to present new research, explore new practices and develop opportunities for new policy strategies that can enhance health literacy for people and planet.

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