About this Report:
For years, immigrant New Yorkers have suffered from inadequate translation and interpretation services at New York City’s public and private hospitals. The 2000 Census reports that 47% of all New York City households speak a language other than English in the home. One out of every four New Yorkers do not speak English. As the City’s demographics have shifted over the years, complaints about access to health care for immigrants have intensified.
During the fall of 2004, Spanish-speaking members and organizers from Make the Road by Walking interviewed 40 Limited English Proficient (LEP) patients at Jamaica Hospital to ascertain the scope of the problem.
Communication Breakdown summarizes the results of these interviews, and includes a brief summary of the City, State and federal laws that require language assistance services for LEP New Yorkers.