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Interpreter services (clients)

As a Washington Apple Health (Medicaid) client, you are entitled to language access services whenever you attend a health care appointment. We are committed to ensuring you receive these services from qualified interpreters.

Do you have language access or ADA questions or need to file a complaint?

Visit our nondiscrimination page

Clients rights to service

Your health care provider is required to provide spoken and sign language access according to Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

If your provider refuses to provide language access services, it can be considered discrimination. (Learn more information about nondiscrimination.)

    How do I get an interpreter?

    Let your health care provider know you need an interpreter when you schedule your appointment. Your health care provider will reach out to Health Care Authority's (HCA) interpreter services contractors to schedule an interpreter. All interpreter services are provided through an HCA-approved vendor. No additional action is required by you.

    Upcoming new services

    Effective May 1, HCA will provide over-the-phone (OPI) or video remote interpreting (VRI) interpreting services, in addition to in person interpreting. These services are provided through UniversalLanguage Service. To access OPI or VRI services, just ask your provider to select one of these options when you schedule your appointment.  

    Spoken Language

    HCA uses UniversalLanguage Services to coordinate spoken language interpreter requests. During the public health emergency, HCA is providing both in-person and over the phone interpreters. If you need an interpreter for your appointment, you may continue to schedule your appointments as needed. The provider is responsible for requesting in-person,  phone, or video (for telehealth) interpreters based on the type of appointment you have. 

    If you have questions, visit the HCA Interpreter services (providers) webpage.

    Sign Language

    HCA uses the State's Master Contract to schedule sign language interpreters. This contract allows virtual interpreting. If you need an interpreter for your appointment, you may continue to schedule appointments as needed. Your provider is responsible for requesting an in-person or virtual (for telehealth) interpreter based on the type of appointment you have.

    You can give your provider the deaf choice form, to help them understand your communication needs when requesting an interpreter.

    If you have questions, visit the DSHS ODHH website​.

    What does my health care provider need to do?

    Providers need to request an interpreter through HCA's interpreter services program. They can visit the interpreter services webpage for providers or contact HCA's interpreter services for help.