April 17, 2015
Information on the Ebola virus posted on public health agency websites is written above the recommended reading level, according to recent findings.
Researchers from the CDC downloaded information on Ebola intended for public consumption from the websites of several public health agencies, including the CDC, the European Centre for Disease Control, Public Health England, the Canadian government, the Australian government, and WHO. They used readability indicators that included the Gunning FOG Index, the Flesch Reading Ease formula, the Linsear Write Formula, and the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level. All methods calculate readability scores by analyzing word- and syllable-sentence proportions and correlating them with the number of years of US education needed to comprehend the content.