Rx: Building Early Literacy in Healthcare | BookSpring

Rx: Building Early Literacy in Healthcare

Are you a healthcare professional who cares about your children social, emotional, and academic development? If so, we want to partner with you to infuse early literacy interventions into your day-to-day practice.


As part of an ongoing national effort to support pediatricians to promote early literacy, ReadWell promotes early literacy and school readiness in pediatric exam rooms by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud to support optimal child development. We also provide technical assistance and gently used books to participating sites in Central Texas.  BookSpring currently works with over 20 healthcare providers to provide:

  • New, age appropriate children’s books for distribution by pediatricians in well child visits;
  • Gently used books delivered for use in exam rooms between visits and waiting rooms;
  • A motivational prescription for reading and up-to-date information about free pre-school and adult literacy services;
  • Instruction for doctors and staff about best practices in pediatric literacy;
  • Ongoing evaluations of program quality with reports available;
  • Access to local staff and volunteers to support other needs on request.

Our ReadWell program is currently restricted to clinics that serve low income populations of at least 90% low income in Central Texas, that is families who are on CHiP, Medicaid, WIC, or no insurance at all.  This reflects a deep cost discount due to the generous philanthropic support of many generous individuals and agencies such as United Way of Greater Austin and The St. David’s Foundation.  Each year over 20,000 children are served by ReadWell. These children gain the lifelong benefits of being read aloud to and building home library from birth.

Pediatric Literacy Kits

The American Academy of Pediatrics has said that ALL doctors should be practicing pediatric literacy as part of primary care.

If you are outside of Central Texas or serving a mixed population of families, you can still participate in BookSpringRx.   We offer all the books and materials needed to run a pediatric literacy program in your practice on a monthly or quarterly subscription basis.  It’s easy, fast, and fun, and saves your practice the time and effort of selecting, printing, and ordering your own books and materials.  BookSpring books and materials are compatible with many programs, and contain unique messages and methods supported through research in pediatric literacy and health communication.   You can be a hero to families and improve your patient satisfaction scores, while helping your patients with the critical developmental milestones of early literacy.  It’s a win-win for everyone.

To find out more about these programs, contact BookSpringRx Director Rachel Elliott at rachel.elliott @ bookspring.org or (512) 472-1791 x 107.