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The Pfizer Health Literacy Award in Advancing Patient Safety

Thursday, May 15, 2008   (0 Comments)
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Pfizer and the Partnership for Clear Health Communication at the National Patient Safety Foundation have announced the institution of an award to recognize health literacy work that has a direct impact on improving the safety of the health care system for the patients and families it serves.  This award, The Pfizer Health Literacy Award in Advancing Patient Safety, conferred at the National Patient Safety Foundation’s annual Congress, is presented to an individual who has made significant strides in improving the health literacy of their constituents and community through research, advocacy, and program implementation in order to improve safety and quality of care. The inaugural recipient of the award is Dr. Dean Schillinger, Director of the Center for Vulnerable Populations at the University of California San Francisco and an Associate Professor of Medicine at UCSF School of Medicine, for the work he and his group have done in health communication sciences and program design.


Dr. Schillinger is a passionate clinical scholar, tireless teacher, outstanding mentor and pioneer in the field of health literacy. His prolific body of work has defined, as well as advanced, the fields of health literacy and patient safety. Most importantly, he has employed innovative methods to carry out translational research that has led not only to advances in scientific knowledge about health literacy and safety, but has also directly influenced practice and policy in the promotion of patient safety for vulnerable patients.
Dr. Schillinger will receive a one-time grant from Pfizer in the amount of $15,000.

Barbara DeBuono, MD, MPH, Executive Director, Public Health and Government, Pfizer Global Pharmaceuticals, commented on the announcement. “We are honored to recognize Dr. Schillinger and his team for their tremendous contribution to our understanding of the link between health literacy and patient care and management.  We are so pleased that this award will contribute to their continued work,” she said. “Their pioneering efforts in the field of health literacy and its application to patient self management, quality and safety have made a remarkable difference for patients and providers across the health care system.”  Diane C. Pinakiewicz, President of the National Patient Safety Foundation, added, “It is our honor to partner with Pfizer in the Partnership’s health literacy programs and to recognize Dr. Shillinger’s tremendous contributions to the work of improved communications between patients and providers, a cornerstone of patient safety.”


Pfizer discovers and develops innovative medicines to treat and help prevent disease for both people and animals. We also partner with healthcare providers, governments and local communities around the world to expand access to our medicines and to provide better quality healthcare and health system support.


The Partnership for Clear Health Communication (PCHC) at the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) is a national, non-profit coalition working to build awareness and advance solutions to improve health literacy and positively impact health outcomes. For more information about PCHC at NPSF visit

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