|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 1.4 million a year, speak more than 190 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:
- Specialized Medical Interpretation Training: HHC has a diverse staff that represents the culturally and linguistically diverse populations of the communities it serves. Selected HHC bilingual and multilingual staff gets specialized medical interpretation training tailored to their professional need in the HHC-CUNY Healthcare Interpreter Certification Program.
- Translations of Essential Documents and Patient Education Materials: HHC consent forms, policies, health education materials, and many other written communications are available in English and another 13 languages spoken by the majority of patients: Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Hindi, Korean, Polish, Russian, Spanish, and Urdu.
- Multilingual Signage: HHC hospitals, primary care and specialty clinics 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.