Effective Communication in Hospitals
Good medical care depends upon effective communication between patients and providers. Ineffective communication can lead to improper diagnosis and delayed or improper medical treatment. Effective communication with persons who have limited English proficiency, as well as persons who are deaf or hard-of-hearing, often requires interpreters or other services. Many hospitals are actively taking steps to address these needs. However, hospitals face increasing challenges to meet the communication needs of an increasingly diverse population.To help hospitals meet these challenges, OCR is collaborating with the American Hospital Association (AHA) and its affiliates in an Effective Communication in Hospitals Initiative. OCR also is making information, resources and tools available to all healthcare organizations that assist persons with limited English proficiency, and persons who are deaf or hard of hearing, to help ensure the effective communication that is essential to quality health care for all persons.