Health literacy has been established and recognized as a social determinant of health; addressing health literacy is a mechanism for reducing health and social inequities. The 19th and 20th IUHPE World Conferences for Health Education and Promotion have increasingly included health literacy as a topic addressed in the scientific program. During these conferences, organizational meetings were also were held for participants to work together on the topic of health literacy.

During the 20th World Conference in Geneva, a Resolution was presented to the General Assembly, proposing that IUHPE address health literacy as a focus point in the strategic priorities and long term vision. A specific recommendation was included to establish a Global Working Group on Health Literacy (now Working Group - WG-HL).

Health Literacy is relevant to achieving the new strategic priorities for IUHPE:


  • Social Determinants of health

  • Non-Communicable Diseases Prevention and Control

  • Health Promotion Systems

  • Health Promotion in Sustainable Development

  • Ongoing operation of the IUHPE (internal)


In addition, it is assumed that active involvement of the IUHPE in health literacy will attract new members that are already involved in health literacy, yet to date have not professionally identified with health promotion.


The Working Group on Health Literacy at the Pre-conference meeting at IUHPE Curitiba Conference in Brazil 2016:



The Working Group on Health Literacy at the Pre-conference meeting at IUHPE Rotorua Conference in New Zealand 2019: