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Exploring the Association Between Health Literacy and Psychological Well-Being Among Industry Managers in Germany

Fiedler, Silja MA; Pfaff, Holger PhD; Soellner, Renate PhD; Pförtner, Timo-Kolja PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: August 2018 - Volume 60 - Issue 8 - p 743–753
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001324

Objective: Industry managers are typically exposed to high work demands but have received limited attention by research, particularly concerning the issue of health literacy and how this relates to their psychological well-being. The aim of this study was to explore the association between health literacy and psychological well-being among managers in Germany.

Methods: An online survey of a sample of 126 commercial industry managers was conducted. Effects of health literacy on psychological well-being (WHO-5 index) were investigated using path analysis.

Results: The findings show a quarter of managers were classified as having poor well-being. Health literacy, namely the facets self-regulation (β = 0.40, P < 0.001), self-perception (β = 0.26, P < 0.001), self-control (β = 0.25, P < 0.01), and proactive approach to health (β = 0.09, P < 0.05), were positively associated with psychological well-being.

Conclusion: The study indicates that higher health literacy is associated with decreased risk of poor well-being.

Institute of Medical Sociology, Health Services Research, and Rehabilitation Science (IMVR) at the University of Cologne, Medical Faculty, Cologne (Ms Fiedler, Prof Pfaff, Dr Pförtner); Institute of Psychology, University of Hildesheim, Hildesheim (Prof Soellner), Germany.

Address correspondence to: Silja Fiedler, MA, Institute of Medical Sociology, Health Services Research, and Rehabilitation Science, Eupener Str. 129, 50933 Cologne, Germany (

Funding Information: This work was supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (01EL1425B) and Cologne Fortune (2680/9059/01).

Conflict of Interest: None declared.

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Copyright © 2018 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine