What reviewers should look for




  • is confident in responding to clinician
  • uses body language that matches confident response
  • asks questions
  • clarifies if not sure
  • before consultation, is able to state why they are there and what they expect to happen
  • at end of consultation, is able to confirm what happened, what they have to do or what will happen next, and that the consultation met their expectations (from before the consultation).





  • asks questions to find out background information – eg, consumer’s knowledge of their condition or their concerns
  • asks questions to find out specific information
  • gives information in logical steps
  • gives information in manageable chunks
  • uses everyday language or, if they use technical words, explains them
  • uses visuals to explain, eg, how the body works
  • uses written materials and explains why they are giving them to the consumer, what part the consumer needs to read and what they expect the consumer to do
  • helps people anticipate the next steps
  • if relevant, goes over consumer’s medicines and explains what each medicine is, why the consumer needs to take it, how it works, how it needs to be taken, any foods to avoid, side effects and how long the consumer will be taking medicine
  • reinforces what needs to be done, emphasises key points and acknowledges what the consumer is doing well
  • monitors body language, checks if consumer gives any indication of uncertainty and asks questions
  • at the end, checks that they have been clear by getting the consumer to explain what they are going to do (does not ask ‘Do you have any questions?’ or ‘Do you understand?’).


This guide is taken from Appendix 8 of Health Literacy Review: A guide.