Working to Meet Patients’ Language Needs

Our quality improvement efforts are designed to ensure quality care and member satisfaction. To achieve these goals, we continually review the aspects of our plan that affect member care and satisfaction and look for ways to improve them. One way to do that is to share details with network practitioners about the languages patients in their area may speak and to provide information on available interpreting services.

Highmark annually assesses languages spoken by population in our service area and compares them to the data that practitioners report on their network applications. Our 2020 analysis concluded that the following counties had greater than 1,000 residents speaking the following primary languages:


Counties in which language
is spoken, and PCPs are
available who speak the language:

Counties in which
language is spoken,
and there are no PCPs
available who speak the language:


Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lehigh

Chinese (including Mandarin and Cantonese)

Dauphin, Lancaster, Lehigh, Northampton,

French, Haitian, and  Cajun

Berks, Lancaster, Lehigh, Northampton, York

German or Other West Germanic

Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Jefferson, Juniata, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Mifflin, Northampton, Northumberland, Perry, Schuylkill, Snyder, York


Other Asian Languages

Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lehigh

Other Indo-European

Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lehigh, Luzerne, Monroe, Northampton, York


Russian, Polish, or Other Slavic

Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lehigh, Luzerne, Monroe, Northampton, Pike, York


Adams, Berks, Carbon, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Lycoming, Monroe, Northampton, Northumberland, Pike, Schuylkill, Union, Wayne, York


Berks, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lehigh


  • The above data are from the 2013-2017 U.S. Census -American Community Survey Five-Year Estimates.
  • This information is based on county population and not Highmark membership population.

In addition, our telephone translation vendor provided a breakdown of all calls Highmark customer service representatives received during the year that required interpreter services. In 2019, Member Service received 26,045 calls (a 5.9 percent increase from 2018) from members speaking 58 different languages. The largest percentage of calls (90.2 percent) was from members speaking Spanish. The total number of calls serviced for Spanish was 23,482.