The United States is nearly as linguistically diverse now than in the early 1900's. Federal and many state laws require health organizations to post signage in the languages represented in their service area. This website offers health organizations a new and innovative solution to help limited English speaking populations navigate health facilities - universal symbols for health care.
Using symbols for health care signage can successfully meet the wayfinding needs of patients that speak hundreds of different languages. This site is designed for health care facilities and graphic designers interested in learning about and using newly developed health care symbols for wayfinding programs.
What do we mean by wayfinding?
Wayfinding is the method for providing consistent information in overt and obvious ways, to guide a person to their destination. This information can include maps and signs; overt clues in the architecture and interior design of a facility; or though the use of color, pattern and texture. Advanced wayfinding systems can also be effective information systems that support organizational identity and branding strategies.
About Symbols - start here if you want to learn about the research conducted to develop health care symbols.
Using Symbols – start here if you are ready to use symbols and want to learn about effective implementation.
Best Practices – this section is still under construction. Our plans are to provide examples of how health organizations are using symbols for wayfinding.
This work is a joint project of Hablamos Juntos and the Society for Environmental Graphic Design (SEGD), funded by the Pioneer team at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Please visit our Project’s Who’s Who section for more about the participants.