HLRP: Health Literacy Research and Practice

Original Research Open Access

Evaluation of a Health Literacy Instrument Designed for the Mining Industry

Hugh A. Shannon, PhD, BScApp (HMS-Ed) (Hons); Anthony W. Parker, PhD, MSc, BSc

  • HLRP: Health Literacy Research and Practice. 2020;4(2):e84-e93
  • https://doi.org/10.3928/24748307-20200316-01
  • Posted April 15, 2020

Abstract

Background:

Health literacy can manifest as an outcome of health education and communication, and it has potential as an antecedent for changes in health-related attitudes, values, and behaviors. Effective communication is vital for the health and safety of mining industry workers, and the ability to accurately measure impact is a necessary advancement in evaluation practices. Higher-risk, production-driven industries require specialized instruments and data collection methods that are sensitive to the workplace environment and capable of generating comprehensive and representative data, with minimal impact on productivity.

Objective:

This research investigated the validity, reliability, and utility of the Health Communication Questionnaire (HCQ), a new instrument for measuring interactive and critical health literacy within the mining industry.

Methods:

The applied research methodology included HCQ readability assessment, content validity indexing, substantive validity analysis, and reliability appraisal via a test-retest procedure with regression analysis and Bland-Altman plots to evaluate intra-subject agreement.

Key Results:

The results demonstrate content validity, exceeding minimum target values after evidence-based refinement of the instrument via substantive validity analysis. Readability targets were met, and reliability outcomes verify that the HCQ is consistent across two time points when tested under true work conditions.

Conclusion:

This study determined the validity, reliability, and utility of the HCQ as an interactive and critical health literacy data collection instrument and an evidence-based solution to concerns regarding absent or highly variable evaluation of Occupational Health and Safety communication practices within the mining industry. [HLRP: Health Literacy Research and Practice. 2020;4(2):e84–e93.]

Plain Language Summary:

This study sought to develop and evaluate a survey instrument capable of determining health literacy indicators within the complex environment of mining industry work sites. Outcomes of this research demonstrate the Health Communication Questionnaire accurately and consistently measures two forms of health literacy and is suitable for use within the mining industry.

Abstract

Background:

Health literacy can manifest as an outcome of health education and communication, and it has potential as an antecedent for changes in health-related attitudes, values, and behaviors. Effective communication is vital for the health and safety of mining industry workers, and the ability to accurately measure impact is a necessary advancement in evaluation practices. Higher-risk, production-driven industries require specialized instruments and data collection methods that are sensitive to the workplace environment and capable of generating comprehensive and representative data, with minimal impact on productivity.

Objective:

This research investigated the validity, reliability, and utility of the Health Communication Questionnaire (HCQ), a new instrument for measuring interactive and critical health literacy within the mining industry.

Methods:

The applied research methodology included HCQ readability assessment, content validity indexing, substantive validity analysis, and reliability appraisal via a test-retest procedure with regression analysis and Bland-Altman plots to evaluate intra-subject agreement.

Key Results:

The results demonstrate content validity, exceeding minimum target values after evidence-based refinement of the instrument via substantive validity analysis. Readability targets were met, and reliability outcomes verify that the HCQ is consistent across two time points when tested under true work conditions.

Conclusion:

This study determined the validity, reliability, and utility of the HCQ as an interactive and critical health literacy data collection instrument and an evidence-based solution to concerns regarding absent or highly variable evaluation of Occupational Health and Safety communication practices within the mining industry. [HLRP: Health Literacy Research and Practice. 2020;4(2):e84–e93.]

Plain Language Summary:

This study sought to develop and evaluate a survey instrument capable of determining health literacy indicators within the complex environment of mining industry work sites. Outcomes of this research demonstrate the Health Communication Questionnaire accurately and consistently measures two forms of health literacy and is suitable for use within the mining industry.

The traditional focus of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) field has been hazards in the workplace and potential injury and mortality (Hymel, et al., 2011; Mearns, Hope, Ford, & Tetrick, 2010). Although this is critically important for mining and other higher-risk industries, an integrated and holistic conceptualization of OHS recognizing personal lifestyles, work organization, and ecological determinants is necessary. This approach emphasizes a need for health protection and promotion (Partnership for European Research in Occupational Safety and Health, 2012). Health literacy (HL) is a potential outcome of health education and communication, and an important antecedent of health-promoting behavior (Frisch, Camerini, Diviani & Schulz, 2012; Nutbeam, Harris, & Wise, 2010). Nutbeam's (2000) seminal article provided a framework for a multidimensional model of HL comprising, functional health literacy (FHL), interactive health literacy (IHL), and critical health literacy (CHL). According to this model, FHL, IHL, and CHL exist along a continuum of increasing autonomy and empowerment (Nutbeam, 2008).

Mining workers are required to undertake compulsory OHS training when entering the workforce and regularly throughout their careers, and a concern is the absence or high variability of evaluation methods applied to OHS communication practices (Cullen, 2008; Parker, Hubinger, & Worringham, 2004; Somerville & Abrahamsson, 2003). The growing body of literature has highlighted a need for further investigation of HL in settings for daily living (Abel, 2008; Nutbeam, et al., 2010; Nutbeam, 2009; Protheroe, Wallace, Rowlands, & DeVoe, 2009). Despite significant progress, a meta-analysis of 51 HL measurement instruments (Haun, Valerio, McCormack, Sørensen, & Paasche-Orlow, 2014) identified relatively limited coverage of interaction, information seeking, decision-making, and self-efficacy constructs that are inherent elements of Nutbeam's (2000) multidimensional model. Four of the reviewed instruments incorporating substantial coverage of these constructs include the Swiss Health Literacy Survey (Wang, Thombs, & Schmid, 2014), Health Literacy Questionnaire (Osborne, Batterham, Elsworth, Hawkins, & Buchbinder, 2013), The European Health Literacy Questionnaire (Sørensen, et al., 2013), and All Aspects of Health Literacy Scale (Chinn & McCarthy, 2013). Other HL measurement progress includes context-specific scales. Examples include critical skill development in formal education settings and community health centers (Mogford, Gould, & Devoght, 2011); decision-making among groups with differing levels of educational attainment and FHL (Smith, Dixon, Trevena, Nutbeam, & McCaffery, 2009); and shared decision-making associated with use of a bowel cancer screening aid (Smith, Nutbeam & McCaffery, 2013).

In the absence of a universally supported comprehensive HL measurement instrument for occupational settings at the time of conducting this research, and no identified evidence of HL data collection within the mining industry, it was necessary to develop a new context-specific instrument. The Health Communication Questionnaire (HCQ) was developed to facilitate measurement of IHL and CHL indicators, enabling objective evaluation of occupational health education and communication within the mining industry. Accordingly, the aim of this study was to design and test the validity, reliability, and utility of the HCQ within the mining industry. Individual HCQ items were evaluated to determine whether they are a valid representation of IHL and CHL constructs. It was also necessary to evaluate whether the HCQ can yield consistent results with a representative sample of mining industry workers under true work conditions. The study consisted of integrated stages including determining the specialized needs of the mining industry context, questionnaire development, readability assessment, validation procedures, questionnaire refinement, and reliability testing.

Methods

Ethical clearance was granted by the Queensland University of Technology Human Research Ethics Committee. The purpose, requirements, confidentiality, voluntary nature of the research and option to withdraw were communicated with participants in writing and verbally reinforced. Return of the questionnaire and other documents were accepted as indications of consent to participate.

Questionnaire Development and Readability Assessment

The method of questionnaire development and evaluation was based upon a multistage process including a literature review, item generation, validity testing, item impact analyses, and questionnaire revision as used by Broder, McGrath & Cisneros (2007). The Australian mining industry is production driven, with many sites operating continuously. This presents challenges in conducting research involving the workforce, particularly with respect to the time constraints (Du Plessis, Cronin, Corney, & Green, 2013). To minimize production schedule disruption, it was necessary to apply a research method capable of efficient data collection. Self-report questionnaires are the most widely used research method in the industrial setting; however, they can be susceptible to limitations including respondents not being truthful and misinterpretation (Cottrell & McKenzie, 2005). These potential influences were mitigated via extensive workforce engagement and the experimental design, which included comprehensive validity, reliability, and pilot testing.

Due to environmental factors, time constraints, and work crew size, it was not possible to facilitate the HCQ in a digital mode. Therefore, it was designed as a hard copy instrument for expeditious data collection. The HCQ includes industry-specific terminology consistent with previous mining questionnaires (Parker, Tones & Ritchie, 2017; Parker & McLean, 2012; Parker et al., 2004) and five sub-scales representing indicators of IHL and CHL. These indicators are based upon HL constructs including efficacy, motivation, self-efficacy, autonomy, and empowerment (Nutbeam, 2008). The five indicators, HL dimension alignment, and 14 sample items are identified in Table 1.

Health Communication Questionnaire Indicators of Health Literacy, Associated Dimensions, and Sample Items

Table 1:

Health Communication Questionnaire Indicators of Health Literacy, Associated Dimensions, and Sample Items

Questionnaire development was also guided by a range of principles including clear and concise statements, using language familiar to respondents, one construct per item, and user-friendly layout (Boynton & Greenhalgh, 2004; Harrison & McLaughlin, 1993; Hinkin, 1998). Some negatively phrased items with corresponding reverse scoring were incorporated to reduce the potential for inaccurate responses due to respondent fatigue or boredom. The HCQ enables respondents to rate their level of agreement using a visual analogue scale (VAS), distinguishable from dichotomous and interval scales as it comprises a continuum between two end points. A potential advantage of the VAS compared to other types of scales is the degree of sensitivity afforded (Headley & Harrigan, 2009; Huang, Wilkie, & Berry, 1996).

Readability assessment enables evaluation of the document complexity, and therefore, suitability for a target audience. The Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level (FKGL) test provided an efficient method for assessing readability (Walters & Hamrell, 2008) and is defined as FKGL = (0.39 × ASL) + (11.8 × ASW) − 15.59, where “ASL” represents average sentence length and “ASW” represents the average number of syllables per word. A targeted FKGL test score range of 8 to 9 was selected as education level, and qualification data from a whole company health and safety climate survey (Parker & McLean, 2012) reflected workforce literacy skills meeting or exceeding this criterion.

Validity Testing

Two forms of applied validity testing included Substantive Validity Analysis (SVA) and the Content Validity Index (CVI). SVA is a pre-testing procedure developed by Anderson & Gerbing (1991) to identify whether new instrument items exhibit ambiguity or bias. Respondents complete a sorting task, matching randomized questionnaire items with lay language descriptions of constructs. The substantive-validity coefficient (CSV) proposed by Anderson & Gerbing (1991) is defined as CSV = (nc − no) / N, where, “nc” represents the number of respondents that assign the item to the intended construct; “no” represents the highest number of respondents assigning the item to any other construct; and ‘N’ the total number of respondents (Ashiabi & Hasanen, 2012). Calculated CSV values fall within a range from −1 to +1.0, with values at the upper end indicating greater agreement with intended matches and less conformity between respondents identifying alternative nonintended matches (Anderson & Gerbing, 1991). SVA can be conducted with 12 to 30 participants who are representative of the target population, as well as nonrepresentative participants, as the task does not require contextual or phenomena-based knowledge (Anderson & Gerbing, 1991; Hinkin, 1998; Schriesheim, Powers, Scandura, Gardiner, & Lankau, 1993). Participants included mining industry workers (n = 20), with a distribution of job categories and a demographic profile consistent with research previously conducted with the mining company (Parker & McLean, 2012), and final year university students majoring in Health Education (n = 20).

The second form of validity testing involved application of the CVI developed by Lynn (1986) as a quantitative approach for determining content validity of items and whole instruments. Expert reviewers rate the relevance of items, most commonly via a 4-point scale. CVI establishes the level of inter-rater agreement after independent reviews by a minimum of three expert panel members and supports objective decision-making about the retention, deletion, or modification of items (Davis, 1992; Jezewski, et al., 2009; Polit & Beck, 2006). A potential limitation is that CVI may be inflated by random probability of agreement. Although the likelihood of this outcome is low, it can be counteracted by engaging a strong panel of reviewers with a high level of expertise, clear procedural instructions, and requiring universal agreement when there are five or fewer reviewers (Lynn, 1986; Polit, Beck & Owen, 2007; Tojib & Sugianto, 2006).

Five internationally renowned HL experts were identified as suitable critical reviewers. Expert reviewers who accepted the invitation (n = 3) were sent a digital copy of the HCQ with embedded four-point CVI rating scales: (1) not relevant, (2) somewhat relevant, (3) quite relevant, and (4) highly relevant to IHL or CHL, and qualitative feedback was also requested. Item level CVI is defined as I-CVI = A/N, where “A” represents the number of experts assigning a rating of 3 or 4, and “N” is the number of expert reviewers (Polit et al., 2007; Polit & Beck, 2006). In keeping with Lynn's (1986) criteria, the target I-CVI value was 1.

The next round of validity testing involved whole instrument or scale level CVI analysis using averaging (S-CVI/Ave) and universal agreement methods (S-CVI/UA) applied by Polit, Beck, & Owen (2007). The averaging method is defined as S-CVI/Ave = Total I-CVI/NI, where “Total I-CVI” represents the combined I-CVI values and “NI” is the number of items in the instrument. The universal agreement method is defined as S-CVI/UA = NUA/NI, where “NUA” represents the number of items where universal agreement for a rating of 3 or 4 exists among expert reviewers and “NI” is the number of items in the instrument. New instruments subjected to CVI testing should meet or exceed S-CVI/Ave and S-CVI/UA targets of 0.90 and 0.80, respectively (Polit et al., 2007).

Reliability and Pilot Testing

The purpose of the reliability and pilot testing was to determine whether the questionnaire can yield consistent results for HL constructs, with a representative sample of mining industry workers (n = 46) under true work conditions. The HCQ incorporated a VAS of 60 mm with Likert reference labels including strongly disagree, disagree, agree, and strongly agree provided below the line to assist decision-making. Participants were instructed to place a vertical mark at any point along the line that reflected their level of agreement with the statements provided. VAS data has traditionally been measured as the distance from the start of the scale to the respondent's mark using rulers or micrometers (Headley & Harrigan, 2009; Huang et al., 1996). Despite the previously discussed benefits of VAS, a limitation is the time associated with direct measurement and data entry (Huang et al., 1996). To improve efficiency, a 150-mm stainless steel digital caliper was used, with direct spreadsheet upload via a push button cable.

HCQ reliability assessment involved a test-retest procedure with the same group of participants and an interval of 2 days. This interval was chosen to avoid changes in affective state that can occur at the start or end of rosters and recollection bias that could occur with a shorter interval. Marx, Menezes, Horovitz, Jones & Warren (2003) identified intervals of 2 days to 2 weeks as most reported in the literature, determining no statistically significant differences between these intervals for five scales evaluated. In this study, three groups of workers, representative of the full range of work roles at the site, undertook the test-retest procedure. Work crews A and B, comprising maintenance and production workers completed the questionnaire pre-shift. Professional staff completed the questionnaire during their shift. Retesting occurred 2 days later at the same time and equivalent stage in the shift to maintain consistency.

Repeatability is an estimation of agreement between two measurements derived via the same method (Bland & Altman, 2003). Correlation measures relationship, but is not necessarily an indicator of agreement, as magnitude can vary even when correlation is high (Bland & Altman, 1986); therefore, the Bland-Altman plot was selected as the most appropriate method to determine intra-subject variability (Bland & Altman, 2003; Euser, Dekker, & le Cessie, 2008). It is a widely used graphical technique for assessing repeatability (Bland and Altman, 2012). The test-retest difference was recorded against the y-axis, with increments from −60 to +60 mm. The mean of both test days was recorded against the x-axis with increments from 0 to 60 mm. Scatter plots supported visual inspection for outlier identification and a line of mean difference enabled exploration of item level bias (Bland & Altman, 2007). Bland-Altman plots were generated for each of the IHL and CHL-associated HCQ items and regression analysis was completed.

Results

Readability Assessment and Validity Testing

The FKGL test score of 8.9 fell within the target range deeming the HCQ readability level appropriate for the focus population. The instrument contained demographic items and 57 IHL/CHL items at the SVA pre-testing stage. Initial validity testing subjected these items to the SVA procedure and 48 fell within the targeted upper range of 0 to 1. Nine items fell outside this range as identified in Figure 1. They were marked for potential deletion and further scrutiny during the second phase of validity testing. Two additional items were developed to strengthen the item pool associated with one of the HL indicators.

Substantive-validity coefficient values for interactive health literacy (IHL)/critical health literacy (CHL) items.

Figure 1.

Substantive-validity coefficient values for interactive health literacy (IHL)/critical health literacy (CHL) items.

The second phase of validity testing involved calculation of I-CVI, S-CVI/Ave and S-CVI/UA. After initial assessment of the questionnaire, calculated I-CVI values for IHL/CHL-associated questionnaire items ranged from a lower level of 0.33 (n = 9) to 0.67 (n = 22) and the maximum level of 1 (n = 28). All items generating I-CVI values of 0.33 were deleted, along with 16 of the 22 items that generated I-CVI values of 0.67. The remaining six items with an I-CVI rating of 0.67 were able to be retained after minor modification aligned with expert reviewer qualitative feedback. A further 28 IHL/CHL-associated questionnaire items with the highest possible I-CVI values of 1 were retained. The more commonly reported scale level S-CVI/Ave method and the more rigorous S-CVI/UA method were both applied within this research study. S-CVI/Ave and S-CVI/UA were calculated for the retained IHL and CHL items (n = 34) at 0.94 and 0.82, respectively. These values exceed the minimum target values of 0.90 (S-CVI/Ave) and 0.80 (S-CVI/UA) stipulated by Polit & Beck (2006).

Reliability and Pilot Testing

Reliability and pilot testing were conducted with 62 participants, representing a work group response rate of 95.38%. A summary of the demographic profile of the mining industry workers that completed both days of reliability and pilot testing (n = 46) is presented in Table 2. Sixteen of the initial participants were unable to follow up on the second day of testing due to urgent work tasks critical for site operations or absence. The gender, age, and job category profile of the sample group were representative and consistent with previous mining industry-based research (Parker & McLean, 2012). HCQ completion time ranged from 6 to 13 minutes, with 89% of participants completing within the estimated time of 10 minutes.

Reliability and Pilot Testing Demographic Profile (N = 46)Reliability and Pilot Testing Demographic Profile (N = 46)

Table 2:

Reliability and Pilot Testing Demographic Profile (N = 46)

Macro level regression analysis of the pooled data exhibited a correlation coefficient of .72 (p < .001), which is consistent with typical values accepted in behavioral and social science research for newly developed measures (Hinkin, 1998). Although as previously noted, correlation alone is not sufficient for testing the reliability of a new instrument. Intra-subject agreement was therefore evaluated via Bland-Altman plots generated for each of the 34 HCQ items associated with IHL and CHL remaining after validity testing. An example plot for HCQ Item 31: “I feel confident talking to health professionals and asking them questions” is provided in Figure 2. In this example, the mean difference of −1.25 mm, represented a bias towards a minimally higher rating on the second day, plotted as the dashed horizontal line in Figure 2.

Bland-Altman plot for repeatability of Health Communication Questionnaire Item 31, with mean difference and 95% limits of agreement.

Figure 2.

Bland-Altman plot for repeatability of Health Communication Questionnaire Item 31, with mean difference and 95% limits of agreement.

A summary of the bias values, upper limits of agreement (LoA), and lower LoA for all IHL/CHL-associated HCQ items (n = 34) is presented in Figure 3, with a bias range of −3.26 to 4.93 mm (M = 0.33, SD = 2.10). To understand the data in relative terms, more than one-third (35.29%) of all items were within a bias range of 0 to 0.99 mm and a further 32.35% of HCQ items were within 1 to 1.99 mm. All questionnaire items exhibited unidirectional bias <5 mm, less than one-quarter of the distance between Likert label reference points on the VAS, which align with the 0, ±20, ±40, and ±60-mm horizontal grid lines in Figure 3.

Summary of Bland-Altman plot data. HCQ, Health Communication Questionnaire; LoA = limits of agreement; M-diff, mean difference.

Figure 3.

Summary of Bland-Altman plot data. HCQ, Health Communication Questionnaire; LoA = limits of agreement; M-diff, mean difference.

Discussion

Systematic evaluation and refinement of the HCQ produced an instrument demonstrating IHL and CHL content validity, by exceeding targeted thresholds that were comparatively higher index benchmarks than commonly reported in the literature. HCQ face validity was evident via a range of quality control research methods conducted with a representative group of mining workers. Combined use of SVA and CVI analyses provided a systematic and robust validation method for critical review of the questionnaire items. The first round of validity testing via the SVA method was implemented to identify whether the questionnaire items were framed appropriately for the target audience, to identify potential ambiguity, and to enable objective evaluation of HCQ items. Application of the CVI method involving expert reviewers, in combination with the SVA method provided a strong evidence-based case for item retention, modification, or removal during the prospective questionnaire refinement process. HCQ instrument validity is well supported by results exceeding the target S-CVI/Ave and S-CVI/UA values of 0.90 and 0.80, respectively (Polit & Beck, 2006).

Macro level evaluation of the HCQ produced a correlation coefficient that exceeded a target of 0.70 for newly developed measures, consistent with values typically accepted in behavioral and social science research (Hinkin, 1998). As previously discussed, correlation may not be an indication of intra-subject agreement; therefore, a more rigorous interrogative methodology was necessary. Bias calculation provided an objective way of investigating consistency. The Bland-Altman repeatability plots produced during the micro level evaluation enabled a more comprehensive review of the instrument via critical appraisal of each item. Outcomes verify that the HCQ is reliable and capable of yielding consistent data across two time points when tested under true work conditions. Furthermore, all IHL/CHL HCQ items exhibited a unidirectional bias <5 mm, including two-thirds of items <2 mm. From a functional perspective, this provides greater discernibility than a 13-point interval scale. This justifies HCQ visual analogue scale inclusion over dichotomous and interval scales commonly used within questionnaires.

Questionnaire respondents not being truthful, and mis-interpretation were previously identified as potential limitations of self-report instruments. Misinterpretation was mitigated via application of the pre-testing SVA sorting task to check for understanding and monitoring participant queries during reliability testing. Inclusion of reverse scored items and checking response patterns supported exploration of participant intentions for veracious responses. The HCQ included several qualitative items for participants to disclose any applied skills as a means for checking consistency with their perceptions. Despite this strategy, there is potential for misalignment between participant perceptions or intentions and manifestations of skills and behaviors. This is acknowledged as a limitation of this self-report instrument and the reason for the HCQ incorporating indicators of interactive and critical health literacy as reflected in Table 1.

The aim of this study was to design and test the validity, reliability, and utility of the HCQ within the mining industry. This was fulfilled via a multistage process comprising comprehensive data collection and analysis methods enabling informed evaluation of HCQ efficacy. The high response rate achieved reinforces the importance of investing time to develop a thorough understanding of the context and actively engaging stakeholders when conducting research in complex industry settings.

Conclusion

Substantial progress has been made in the field of HL measurement and this study has responded to the need for greater exploration of IHL and CHL (Smith et al., 2013; Nutbeam, 2009; Pleasant & Kuruvilla, 2008). The results of this research instill confidence in the use of this new instrument for measuring indicators of IHL and CHL within the mining industry. Validation is an ongoing process; therefore, further testing will occur at other work sites in the future. The HCQ presents an evidence-based solution to previously discussed concerns regarding absent or highly variable evaluation of OHS communication practices within the mining industry. Subsequent application of the HCQ beyond this study includes its use for evaluating the impact of digital storytelling as a narrative health education and communication strategy for the mining industry.

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Health Communication Questionnaire Indicators of Health Literacy, Associated Dimensions, and Sample Items

Indicator Health Literacy Dimension

Responding to health information provided by others Interactive health literacy
  If someone was giving a presentation on a health issue at this mine site, I would listen carefully if I thought there was significant risk for me in the future
  Health information communicated to me at this mine site during the past 3 months was not useful and did not motivate me to improve or look after my health
  I can recall a useful presentation or video at work during the past 3 months that made me think about the health of a co-worker

Discussing health at work, home, or with friends Interactive health literacy
  At this mine site we are encouraged to talk about health issues that we think are important
  If I was concerned about my own health, I would feel comfortable discussing it with a family member or friend
  If a mining co-worker spoke to me about their health problem, I would feel comfortable sharing my own experiences if they were relevant

Seeking health information Interactive health literacy
  I feel confident talking to health professionals and asking them questions
  I have attempted to find health information and felt overwhelmed by the amount available

Achieving control over personal health Critical health literacy
  My health is something that I normally only think about if a problem arises
  I make poor personal choices that increase my risk of preventable health problems
  I believe I am doing everything I can to improve or look after my mental health

Helping others improve or maintain health Critical health literacy
  If a mining co-worker was worried about their health, I would feel confident helping them to find appropriate information or seek professiona help
  If I felt that my mining co-workers could benefit from knowing about a health issue, I would suggest it to site management
  If a group of my mining co-workers decided to do something to achieve a positive health outcome, I would support their effort and actively encourage them

Reliability and Pilot Testing Demographic Profile (N = 46)

Demographic Variable Result (%)

Gender
  Male 93.48 (n = 43)
  Female 6.52 (n = 3)

Age range 17–56 years (M = 38.60, SD = 10.25)

Job categories
  Operator/vehicle driver 60.87 (n = 28)
  Maintenance/fitter 10.87 (n = 5)
  Professional 6.52 (n = 3)
  Health, safety and environment 4.35 (n = 2)
  Plant 4.35 (n = 2)
  Deputy/supervisor 4.35 (n = 2)
  Administration 2.17 (n = 1)
  Mechanic 2.17 (n = 1)
  Estimating/technical services 2.17 (n = 1)
  Project operations 2.17 (n = 1)

Time working in industry 0.08–35 years (M = 7.56, SD = 7.55)

Time working at current mine site 0.08–35 years (M = 4.53, SD = 3.49)

Country of birth
  Australia 91.30 (n = 42)
  New Zealand 4.35 (n = 2)
  China 2.17 (n = 1)
  Ireland 2.17 (n = 1)

Main spoken language
  English 97.83 (n = 45)
  Other 2.17 (n = 1)

Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander identification
  Yes 65.22 (n = 30)
  No 34.78 (n = 16)

Highest level of schooling completed
  Year 10 65.22 (n = 30)
  Year 12 34.78 (n = 16)

Highest formal qualifications
  Certificate 28.26 (n = 13)
  Diploma 8.70 (n = 4)
  Bachelor's degree 8.70 (n = 4)
  Postgraduate Master's degree 2.17 (n = 1)
  Nil reported 52.17 (n = 24)
Authors

Hugh A. Shannon, PhD, BScApp (HMS-Ed) (Hons), is a Lecturer and a Researcher, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Faculty of Health, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Queensland University of Technology. Anthony W. Parker, PhD, MSc, BSc, is a Professor and the Leader of the Workforce Health Innovation Research Group, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, Faculty of Health, Queensland University of Technology.

Address correspondence to Hugh A. Shannon, PhD, BScApp (HMS-Ed) (Hons), Queensland University of Technology, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Victoria Park Road, Kelvin Grove 4059, Australia; email: h.shannon@qut.edu.au.

Grant: This project was supported by a commercial research grant provided by the mining division of a large Australian contract services company.

Disclaimer: The investigators were independent of the funding agency in terms of study design, data collection and analyses, and interpretation.

Disclosure: The authors have no relevant financial relationships to disclose.

Acknowledgment: The research team acknowledge the support of a mining corporation in the conduct of this project. The authors convey gratitude for assistance provided by health and safety personnel, mine workers generously offering their time to participate in this study, and health literacy expert reviewers for their critical input during the validation stage.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0). This license allows users to copy and distribute, to remix, transform, and build upon the article non-commercially, provided the author is attributed and the new work is non-commercial.
Received: August 14, 2018
Accepted: May 06, 2019

10.3928/24748307-20200316-01

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