New HHS Language Access Plan

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has published its 2013 Language Access Plan (HHS LAP) ensuring access to the Department’s programs and activities to people with limited English proficiency (LEP). It is available here.

The HHS LAP establishes the Department’s policy and strategy for serving persons with LEP and its commitment to the language access principles that state that people with LEP should have meaningful access to federally funded programs, activities, services and benefits. The plan further serves as a blueprint for HHS Divisions to develop their own agency-specific language access plans.

The HHS LAP is organized into ten cross-cutting elements, including three new elements, with specific actions steps for HHS agencies to include in their respective agency-specific plans. The ten elements are:

ELEMENT 1:     Assessment: Needs and Capacity

ELEMENT 2:     Oral Language Assistance Services

ELEMENT 3:     Written Translations

ELEMENT 4:     Policies and Procedures

ELEMENT 5:     Notification of the Availability of Language Assistance at no Cost

ELEMENT 6:     Staff Training

ELEMENT 7:     Assessment: Access and Quality

ELEMENT 8:     Stakeholder Consultation (New Element)

ELEMENT 9:     Digital Information (New Element)

ELEMENT 10:   Grant Assurance and Compliance (New Element)