Rima Rudd, Sc.D., is the Senior Lecturer on Health Literacy, Education, and Policy at the Harvard School of Public Health. Her work centers on health communication and on the design and evaluation of public health community based programs. She has been teaching courses on innovative strategies in health education, program planning and evaluation, psychosocial and behavioral theory, and health literacy since 1988. Dr. Rudd is focusing her research inquiries and policy work on literacy related disparities and literacy related barriers to health programs, services, and care, working closely with the adult education, public health, oral health, and medical sectors.
Dr. Rudd wrote several reports that help shape the agenda in health literacy research and practice. They include the health literacy chapter of the Health and Human Services report Communicating Health: Priorities and Strategies for Progress (2003) and helped shape the 2010 National Call for Action. She coded all health related items in the international surveys for assessments of adult literacy skills enabling the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and other countries to assess national health literacy skills. She authored the Educational Testing Services report Literacy and Health in America (2004) and contributed to other national assessments. Dr. Rudd provided two in-depth literature reviews (Review of Adult Learning and Literacy volume 1 in 2000 and volume 7 in 2007). She served on the Institute of Medicine Committee on Health Literacy, the National Research Council Committee on Measuring Adult Literacy, the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research Workgroup on Oral Health Literacy, on the Joint Commission Advisory Committee on Health Literacy and Patient Safety and contributed to the ensuing reports and white papers as well as to several IOM Health Literacy Round Table publications. She has received national and international awards for her work in health literacy. Most recently, the University of Maryland named a doctoral scholar’s award in her honor.