Monday, December 5, 2016

UDOH News Release: New Report Highlights Utah's Top Languages

New Report Highlights Utah’s Top Languages

(Salt Lake City, UT) – The Utah Department of Health (UDOH) recently released a new report listing the top 20 languages spoken in Utah. Reports for the six most populated counties in the state – Cache, Davis, Salt Lake, Utah, Washington, and Weber counties – were also released and list the top 15 languages spoken in these counties.

According to the 2010-2014 American Community Survey, one in seven Utah residents speaks a language other than English at home and one-third of these speak English less than very well. The reports are intended to assist agencies providing health programs and services to limited English proficient (LEP) clients and patients.

The top five languages spoken in Utah are English, Spanish, Chinese, German, and Navajo.

“People may be surprised by the diversity of languages spoken in our state. We hope the reports bring attention to the language barriers faced by many of our fellow Utahns as they try to navigate the healthcare system,” said Brittney Okada, with the UDOH Office of Health Disparities

The reports are intended to help healthcare providers better comply with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Minority Health Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) standards. The CLAS guidelines were developed to ensure the delivery of culturally and linguistically appropriate healthcare and services.

“The reports can help providers and health programs better understand their patient and client population, plan for language services, evaluate their current language services, and improve patient and client interactions,” said Okada. “Effective and meaningful communication is essential to health services.”

The Utah Language Data Report and six county language reports can be found at http://health.utah.gov/disparities/class-standards.html under Translation and Interpretation Resources.

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