National CLAS Standards

Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care

The National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care (the National CLAS Standards) are intended to advance health equity, improve quality, and help eliminate health care disparities by establishing a blueprint for health and health care organizations to provide effective, equitable, understandable, and respectful quality care and services that are responsive to diverse cultural health beliefs and practices, preferred languages, health literacy, and other communication needs.


Informational Tools

  1.  What is CLAS? National CLAS Standards At-a-Glance:
  1.   A Blueprint for Advancing and Sustaining CLAS Policy and Practice (The Blueprint) (PDF 1.3 MB)
  2.   Communication Guide




Download the Your Right to an Interpreter poster (PDF, 1.5 MB, P-00417). This poster is a handy tool that informs non-English- and Limited-English-Proficiency- (LEP) speakers of their right to an interpreter, and allows them to request an interpreter.

CLAS Clearinghouse (A compilation of resources and publications on the Web related to the provision of culturally and linguistically appropriate services. Allows users to search by type and topic.)

Cultural Assessment Tools (An annotated bibliography, from Transcultural C.A.R.E. Associates, of tools to assess cultural competence among health care professionals and students in various health care fields; tools to assess CLAS adherence; and CLAS gap-analysis tools.)

Healthy Roads Media (A source of quality health information in many languages and multiple formats.)

IMIA Terminology Resource Database (From the International Medical Interpreters Association, this database includes glossaries, dictionaries, terminology databases, anatomy atlases, nomenclatures, thesauri, lexicons, vocabularies, manuals, encyclopedias and other word-based documents in the fields of medicine and healthcare in the various languages used by IMIA interpreters.)


State Partners:

Wisconsin Division of Public Health (View Pledge, PDF, 153 KB)

Community Partners:
Local Health Departments:

Cultural Competency

Cultural Competency
DHS Resources
External Resources

Language Access

Language Access
DHS Resources
External Resources

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The Wisconsin Medical Society has adopted a resolution to encourage physicians to undertake reasonable efforts to ensure that they and their practices comport with the CLAS standards.

Sign our CLAS Standards Pledge (Word,  85 KB, Form F-01215) and formally commit to adopting, promoting and implementing the standards.

Minority Health Officer, Evelyn Cruz, has been licensed as a trainer in Cultural Competency in Health and Human Services, with specific focus on meeting mandates and recommendations for CLAS.



Language Access Plans:

  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has published its 2013 Language Access Plan (HHS LAP)  (PDF, 376 KB) ensuring access to the Department's programs and activities to people with limited English proficiency (LEP).
  • As an agency receiving federal funds, Wisconsin DHS is required to establish a language policy and plan to serve Limited English Proficiency (LEP) individuals.



Informational Tools


Trainings and Continuing Education


A Physician's Practical Guide to Culturally Competent Care

Beyond the Right Thing to Do: The Legal Case for CLAS Implementation (Webcast, help)
© Federal Compliance Consulting LLC and Bruce L. Adelson, 2013. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized duplication prohibited. Linked with permission. For permission to use, distribute, or reproduce this presentation, contact Bruce Adelson at or 301-762-5272.

Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services (CLAS) Trainings on TRAIN

Four training modules pertaining to CLAS are posted on TRAIN. All modules are available to provide learners with four learning opportunities on the legal basis for these standards, and how compliance can improve quality of services and strengthen business practices. The presenter is national expert Bruce Adelson, Esq., former U.S. DOJ attorney. For easy retrieval, search under the following course numbers for each module:

Culturally Competent Nursing Care: A Cornerstone of Caring

Cultural Competency Curriculum for Disaster Preparedness and Crisis Response

Health Literacy Series with Literacy Network (Register on TRAIN)


Intangible Outcomes Approach to Program Evaluation (Register on TRAIN): Course #1059064

Oral Health Education Initiative

Special Olympics of Wisconsin: Improving the Health and Well-Being of Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (Register on TRAIN): Course #1059480

Last Revised: April 6, 2017