|Multilingual signage greets Coney Island Hospital patients in English, Spanish, Russian, Urdu and Chinese.|
HHC is dedicated to maximizing healthcare outcomes for its patients. But when language barriers exist, it is difficult for healthcare givers and patients, alike, to communicate with confidence. Accurate language translation and interpretation services reduce medical errors and increase the patient's ability to participate fully in important healthcare decisions.
HHC's patients, who number over a million each year, speak over 100 different languages. HHC has decades of experience caring for those who speak little or no English. In fact, HHC has become a model that other hospital systems can replicate to meet communication guidelines established by the New York State Department of Health.
HHC's language services include:
- Telephonic Services: Enables all HHC facilities to have immediate access to professional interpretation services in more than 120 languages, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- Print and electronic publications: HHC policies, health education materials, discharge instructions and many other written communications are available in English and the other 12 "HHC languages" spoken by the majority of patients. The languages include Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Hindi, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish, and Urdu. Portions of the HHC website are posted in Spanish.
- Specialized Medical Interpretation Training: Selected HHC bilingual and multilingual staff and volunteers get specialized medical interpretation training tailored to their professional needs.
- Multilingual Signage: HHC facilities display signage appropriate to their patient population; the signage has won national recognition from the Society for Environmental Graphic Design.
HHC is also collaborative partner of the NY Immigration Coalition and other advocacy organizations that get the message to immigrants about the patient-centered care HHC offers everyone.
See multilingual messages about HHC Options—our healthcare financial assistance program for all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status.