Call for papers, issue 3, September 2019 – Deadline for submission: 15-04-2019

Public Health Panorama calls for the submission of papers for a special issue on health literacy in the WHO European Region. The special issue will be published in September 2019 to coincide with the 69th session of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe.


Health literacy refers, broadly, to the ability of individuals to “gain access to, understand and use information in ways which promote and maintain good health for themselves, their families and their communities”. Health literacy applies not only to individuals, but also to organizations and their efforts to provide care and services that make it easier for people to navigate, understand and use information and services to take care of their health.

WHO recognizes health literacy as one of the key health promotion pillars that aim to improve health outcomes, empower citizens, reduce inequities and accelerate progress towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Shanghai Declaration (2016) highlights health literacy as a key determinant of health and promotes investment in its development. Improving health literacy is also encouraged in Health 2020, the European policy framework.

Currently, there are large gaps in health literacy between and within countries, which contribute to health inequities across the Region. Despite its promise, in many settings health literacy remains an underused tool for designing and supporting implementation of critically needed public health actions.

Call for papers

This themed issue on health literacy sets out to capture the progress made in advancing health literacy across the WHO European Region. It aims to showcase how health literacy is measured and how interventions are contributing to the regional and global health agendas, especially achievement of the SDGs and their health-related targets across the life course and at country level.

Relevant subject areas for papers may therefore include the SDG health targets, as well as noncommunicable diseases and their risk factors, health information and measurement, communicable diseases, emergencies, migrant health, health systems, governance, partnerships, accountability and measurements of health literacy.

In prioritizing papers for acceptance, special consideration will be given to the following:

  • Case studies and practical examples of health literacy (including digital health literacy) projects, particularly at national or regional levels, and in specific settings, as opposed to those that focus on theoretical aspects;
  • Papers that examine health literacy across the life course;
  • Ways of measuring or describing health literacy at subnational, national or regional levels
  • Examples of successful implementation of evidence-informed health literacy policies
  • Papers that present results of achievement and impact at a population level and among vulnerable groups
  • Papers that outline the future research and innovation needs on health literacy

Guidelines for submitting papers

Public Health Panorama invites papers that showcase examples from the WHO European Region and beyond, and papers that are intended for policy-makers, planners, researchers, public health specialists, clinicians, educators, civil society and other interest groups.

Papers in the form of original research, reviews, project reports, policy analysis, case studies and short communication are welcome.

Manuscripts may be submitted in either English or Russian, and accepted papers will be published in both languages.

The deadline for submission is 15 April 2019. Manuscripts should be prepared in accordance with the guidelines for authors and contributors and mention this call for papers in a cover letter. All submissions should be sent to and consist of the manuscript, duly filled in, and a signed cover letter and licence agreement.

For further queries, please contact