Aim: The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between health literacy and infectious diseases such as HIV, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and tuberculosis in female prisoners.
Methods: In this study, 220 female convicts in a prison in Bursa in Yenişehir were evaluated. In the study, the Health Literacy Scale European Union Short Form (HLS-EU-Q16) was applied to female prisoners. In addition, Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C, chest X-ray and PPD results of female convicts were examined.
Results: The mean HLS-EU-Q16 score of the prisoners evaluated in the study was 42.68±7.76, and 10% of the female convicts had insufficient health literacy. There was a statistically significant negative correlation between the age of the women and their health literacy scores (r=-0.222, p=0.001). HLS-EU-Q16 scores were statistically significantly different (p<0.05) according to family income, marital status, occupation and education. HLS-EU-Q16 mean scores were found to be lower in convicts with chronic disease (p<0.05), those with hypertension (p<0.05), those with hyperlipidemia (p<0.05), and those who have a tattoo (p<0.05). The mean of HLS-EU-Q16 in cases who were not vaccinated against hepatitis in the past were lower than those who were vaccinated in the past (p<0.05).
Conclusions: Health literacy was adequate in most of the women prisoners. In this research, as a contribution to the literature, we found that tattooing had an inverse relationship with health literacy. Physicians should be aware that women with tattoos may be prisoners at risk with lower health literacy.