American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes


August 21, 2020

Sally Garneski


Dan Hamilton


The impact of low health literacy on surgical patients’ outcomes to be addressed during American College of Surgeons virtual press conference (August 24)


Surgeons from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Medicine will remotely present new research findings on the impact of low health literacy on surgical patients' outcomes. Their presentation to the media will come shortly after the conclusion of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) 2020 Quality and Safety Conference VIRTUAL. The presenters are:

  • Daniel Chu, MD, FACS
    A colorectal surgeon at UAB Medicine and the study's senior investigator
  • Lauren Theiss, MD
    A third-year surgical resident at UAB School of Medicine and the study's lead investigator


A 30-minute online press conference that will feature the investigators' research summaries and key findings followed by a Q&A session with reporters. The discussion will focus on a single-institution study in which ACS National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP®) data helped researchers identify an association between risk of infection in colorectal surgical patients with limited understanding of health information.


The press conference will be presented via ZOOM and will be coordinated by the ACS media relations team based in Chicago, Ill.  Members of the media should register HERE no later than 12 noon (CDT) on Monday, August 24, to receive a confirmation message containing their login information to participate in the virtual press conference.


Monday, August 24, 2020 from 2:00 to 2:30 pm (CDT).


Low or limited health literacy is common among U.S. adults and may affect health outcomes in many ways, according to the government's Healthy People 2020.  Although patient-level factors such as education, socioeconomic status, older age, and language and cultural barriers can contribute to low health literacy, the complexity of the health information that patients receive also contributes to the problem.