Improving Linguistic Access to Healthcare for People with Limited English Proficiency
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The Wisconsin Coalition for Linguistic Access to Healthcare (WCLAH) was a statewide coalition whose mission is to support access to qualified medical interpreting for Wisconsin's limited English proficient residents.


WCLAH is dedicated to working toward a system of healthcare services for persons with limited English proficiency that includes the following components: 

  • A sufficient supply and distribution of culturally competent professional medical interpreters
  • Healthcare systems that value and demand access to qualified medical interpreters and healthcare providers who understand how to use interpreter services
  • A means to link medical interpreters with healthcare organizations and identify and address unmet needs
  • A process to assure quality and monitor effectiveness of programs
  • Policies and resources to support these components 



WCLAH was formed at the request of the Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services (DHFS), in response to DHFS's desire to address health disparities and improve health outcomes for minorities. 

WCLAH began with an informational meeting convened by the Wisconsin Area Health Education Center (AHEC) system in September, 2003. By the end of 2003, the coalition was formed, had articulated its mission and vision, and established three work groups. In fall 2004, the work groups evolved into four action committees: Website Development, Medical Interpreter Skills Assessment, Provider and Staff Training, and Continuing Education for Medical Interpreters. The full coalition met quarterly, and the action committees met as needed. The coalition is no longer active.


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