7th annual Community Service Learning Conference tackles health literacy


Barry Weiss, M.D., FAAFP, creator of “the Newest Vital Sign,” which uses a nutritional label from an ice cream container to rapidly and accurately measure patients’ health literacy, gives the keynote address at the 7th annual Community Service Learning (CSL) Conference.

The theme of this year’s conference is “A Prescription for Plain Language: Health Literacy.” It is organized by the Center for Medical Humanities & Ethics at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

Other speakers will cover a range of topics, including using interpreters to communicate effectively with patients and how health literacy can affect medication management.


Thursday, April 3, 2014, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
• 9:15 to 10:30 a.m.: Keynote by Dr. Barry Weiss.
• The full conference agenda is here.


Hurd Auditorium, School of Nursing, UT Health Science Center, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio


Dr. Barry Weiss is a tenured professor of family and community medicine at the University of Arizona College of Medicine. His research centers on healthy literacy and patient-physician communication.

“The Newest Vital Sign,” developed by Dr. Weiss and colleagues, has been shown to accurately measure patients’ healthy literacy in about three minutes by asking a half-dozen questions about an ice cream nutritional label.

Dr. Weiss authored the American Medical Association’s health literacy manual for clinicians. He is widely published on health literacy and has served as a consultant on the topic to the Institute of Medicine, among many others.


Health Science Center students will present their own CSL projects from throughout the year at a noon panel presentation and a poster session/reception at 5 p.m. in the Texas Star Café, a short walk from the Hurd Auditorium. The conference has reached its attendance capacity, but members of the news media are welcome.

Efforts like those highlighted at the conference have earned the Health Science Center a place on the U.S. President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll since 2009.


The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, one of the country’s leading health sciences universities, ranks in the top 3 percent of all institutions worldwide receiving National Institutes of Health funding. The university’s schools of medicine, nursing, dentistry, health professions and graduate biomedical sciences have produced more than 29,000 graduates. The $765 million operating budget supports eight campuses in San Antonio, Laredo, Harlingen and Edinburg. For more information on the many ways “We make lives better®,” visit www.uthscsa.edu.

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