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Office of Health Disparities

Language & Culture

Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) Standards

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health released the enhanced CLAS standards to systematically advance health equity and ensure the delivery of culturally respectful and linguistically responsive health care and services.

There are 15 CLAS standards. They are intended to address cultural and linguistic considerations within three broad, inter-related themes: Governance, Leadership and Workforce; Communication and Language Assistance; and Engagement, Continuous Improvement, and Accountability.

A Class about CLAS is an introduction to the National Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services Standards or CLAS Standards. If you've wondered how to personalize your program or practice to better reach your service area, this online training video has been created to help you provide the best services possible to your community. Use this helpful Discussion Guide to promote conversation about A Class About CLAS video and as an implementation guide.

CLAS Resources

The following resources have been developed to help you and your organization implement CLAS standards.

CLAS Toolkit is a practical tool developed by OHD specifically for Utah Department of Health and Local Health Department agencies and programs to inform CLAS implementation efforts.

Workforce Diversity Fact Sheet provides specific information about diversifying your workforce.

CLAS Standards for Mental/Behavioral Health 

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Office of Minority Health (OMH) have created a Behavioral Health Implementation Guide for CLAS. This Behavioral Health Guide underscores the ways in which the National CLAS Standards can improve access to mental and behavioral health care, promote quality programs and practice, and ultimately reduce presistent disparities in mental health and substance use treatement for underserved, minority populations and communities.

The OHD has also created the CLAS for Mental/Behavioral Health training tool to help mental/behavioral health providers in Utah implement CLAS Standards into their organizations and practices. This tool addresses six specific topics:

Accessing CLAS and other OHD training using UTrain

If you are a public health employee, you can take OHD training and print your certificates using UTrain. Follow these instructions.

Translation and Interpretation Resources

Definition of translation vs interpretation.

  • Translation is the written transfer of text information from one language to another.
  • Interpretation is the verbal transfer of spoken information from one language to another.

Utah Language Data

is a report of the most common languages spoken in Utah created to help guide state, county and local public health and health care professionals plan and provide services for Limited English Proficient patients and clients. Specific reports are also available for six of Utah's most populated counties: Cache, Davis, Salt Lake, Utah, Washington and Weber.

Utah Medicaid and CHIP Interpreter Services

are free for program clients. If you need an interpreter, call 801-538-6155 or 1-800-662-9651.

Language Services Guides for Utah Public Health Agencies

If you are a current Utah Department of Health employee, you may use this guide to find a current state of Utah language services contractor.

This Interpretation Toolkit provides guidance to state and local health department personnel through  step-by-step procedures to promote accurate and effective verbal interpretation processes.  The Translation Toolkit and Manual provides detailed explanation of how programs can achieve high quality written translations.

Language Identification Booklet and Poster

have been developed to help you identify what language a person may understand. The booklet contains 35 of the most likely encountered languages spoken in Utah. The poster, Language Identification for Interpreter Services, contains the top 20 languages spoken in Utah and is intended to help public health insurance recipients receive interpreter services.

Translated Resouces for Covered Entities

have been provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Covered entities are required to post notices of nondiscrimination and taglines that alert individuals with limited English proficiency of the availability of language assistance services. Translated resources are available for use by covered entities.

Audio Resources

OHD has created resources for the visually impaired or low literacy patient populations. Audio resources are accessed on the EthnoMed website. EnthoMed is a site that contains information about cultural beliefs and medical issues of many immigrant groups from Latin America, Asia and Africa.

Know Your Rights

If you believe that you have been discriminated against because of your race, color, national origin, disability, age, sex or religion by a health care or human services provider (such as a hospital, nursing home, social service agency) or by a State or local government health or human services agency, you may file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights (OCR). You may file a complaint for yourself or for someone else.

Other Government Offices Serving Minorities

Office of Minority Health, U.S. Dept of Health & Human Services

is dedicated to improving the health of racial and ethnic minority populations through the development of health policies and programs that will help eliminate health disparities.

Utah Multicultural Commission

is chaired by the Lt. Governor and is composed of members appointed by the Governor. Members represent State agencies and leadership within the ethnic community.

Utah Multicultural Affairs Office

is charged with developing a culturally-diverse outreach program for all ethnic communities.

Utah Division of Indian Affairs

works with all state agencies to promote positive intergovernmental relations between the state and tribes.

Utah Indian Health Advisory Board

(UIHAB) advises the Utah Department of Health on issues related to American Indians who are tribal members.

Office of Health Disparities Reduction(OHD), Utah Department of Health(UDOH)

Mailing Address: PO Box 141000 Salt Lake City, UT 84114 | Location: 288 N 1460 W, Salt Lake City, UT 84116


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