Virginia Organizing and Augusta Health will hold an information session about the services that Augusta Health uses to assist patients who are deaf and hard of hearing.
Members of the Staunton-Augusta County-Waynesboro chapter of Virginia Organizing participated in several focus groups with administrators at Augusta Health to share their stories and express their concerns. Augusta Health listened and now major changes and improvements are taking place at the hospital.
The changes include:
- Your choice of an on-site interpreter or Video Remote Interpreting (VRI)
- Two large-screen VRI units with improved WiFi and internet connection
- Improved staff training on how to serve deaf patients
- Increased access to provide more ASL interpreters available on-call
- A team identified as a point of contact to take care of patient concerns and complaints
“I am proud Virginia Organizing supports me, my family, and the community in helping realize our goal of being partners and full, equal participants in healthcare. No longer will we spend hours without interpreting services and staff be unaware of available resources. Having consistent, reliable communication access and training for hospital staff to provide these services gives equal respect for the language, culture, and intelligence of people in our deaf community and to all employees, from the front desk to the top administration,” said Rita Wertman, a deaf patient at Augusta Health and member of Virginia Organizing.