Date of Conferral

2016

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Public Health

Advisor

Clarence J. Schumaker

Abstract

The United States has experienced an increase in older workers as individuals born between 1946 and 1964 have remained in the labor force. Preventive health screening education, such as an immunization flyer, is necessary to avert preventable illness among older workers. Based on previous research, there is a gap regarding age-specific methods for educating the older worker about preventive health. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between various media providing preventive health screening information and the assessed health literacy of the older worker. Based on the health belief model, a quantitative, cross-sectional method was used. A population of older workers (n = 159), starting at age 45, of diverse racial groups and job types, was surveyed to determine their health literacy, preventive health screening knowledge, and frequency of exposure to diverse types of media that facilitate preventive health education. Analysis of variance was used to evaluate the relationship between the various media providing preventive health screening used by the older worker and the health literacy of the older worker. According to the study, the 45-54 age group had the lowest health literacy scores, and all age groups possessed comparable knowledge of preventive health screening education. Finally, 2 types of mediaâ??television and radioâ??were effective in improving health literacy by exposure, and 4 types of mediaâ??television, radio, newspaper, and Internetâ??were perceived effective in providing preventive health education. Implications for positive social change included age-specific methods for educating the older worker about preventive health, which could, in turn, reduce morbidity and mortality caused by preventable diseases such as cancer and heart disease.

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