24 May 2017

Health information for a diverse community

The HCC has launched brochures in 26 languages to promote feedback from diverse communities to improve our health system.

The brochure launch and announcement of continued funding for the Health Translations Directory were celebrated at the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Healthcare (CEH) on 24 May, 2017. The two initiatives support patient feedback, quality improvement and creating better access to translated health information.

Commissioner Karen Cusack said complaints were an important part of quality improvement that helped service providers learn from mistakes and better tailor services to consumer needs.

“Complaints are critical to quality improvement in healthcare, but if sections of the community are not providing feedback or making complaints, it’s hard to fix the problems they face or improve services in response to their needs,” Ms Cusack said. “That’s why it’s important that the complaints we receive reflect the diversity of the Victorian community.”

The HCC’s two brochures have been translated into 26 languages:

  • The Making a Complaint brochure explains the issues the HCC takes complaints about, how to make them and some possible outcomes that can be achieved.
  • The My Health Records, My Rights brochure explains the rights for accessing or correcting health records held by private sector organisations in Victoria and how the HCC can help.
  • Translations are in Arabic, Assyrian, Burmese, Chaldean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Dari, Dinka, Farsi, French, Greek, Hakka, Italian, Karen, Khmer, Korean, Macedonian, Nepali, Pashto, Russian, Samoan, Somali, Tamil, Thai, Turkish and Vietnamese.
  • Eight of the languages (where literacy levels are generally lower) also have voice recordings.

All resources are available via the HCC website and the Health Translations Directory.

Ms Cusack said the translations were just the first step in engaging diverse communities. She said the assistance of ethnic community members and health services was needed to make sure these brochures reached those who need them.

For more information visit hcc.vic.gov.au or call 1300 582 113 (9-5, Mon to Fri). Complaints can be made online or by phone, or via the Translating and Interpreting Service.

Malaysian-Australian man making a complaint