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Federal Relay Services

VRI (Video Remote Interpreting) - A Reasonable Accommodation for the Deaf, Late Deafened and Hard-of-Hearing
Although once groundbreaking technology, TTY's are now considered to be outmoded. The Indian Health Service has therefore replaced the obsolete TTY technology with the Federal Video Remote Interpreting Service, which is now available.

What is Video Remote Interpreting?

The Federal Video Remote Interpreting (VRI) provides instantaneous on demand remote sign language interpreting in order to facilitate communication between individuals who are deaf, late deafened, hard-of-hearing; in the same location, i.e. office, cubicle, conference room, in one-on-one meetings, appointments with managers, peers or co-workers and job applicants can utilize this system.

What are the benefits of Federal VRI?

  • Communicate effectively and efficiently with managers, co-workers, peers, and job applicants using a certified language interpreter
  • No need to reserve a live sign language interpreter in advance
  • Communicate from your own office space
  • No time limits, or minimums so you can use Federal VRI for as little or as much time as you need
  • All calls are confidential and no records of conversations are ever retained
  • Available sign language interpreting in English and Spanish language (if English/Spanish translation is needed, a 24 hour notice is required)*
  • Meets a number of security requirements including GSA IT Security Standards, and
  • Federal Information Processing Standards

As of now, the Indian Health Service is covered by a task order that is supplied by the General Services Administration (GSA) called “Government Wide Task Order.” That means that IHS employees currently have access to any of the Federal Relay services that are being offered at this time including: speech to speech, CAP Tel, IP Relay, Relay Conference Captioning and Video Relay (VRS and VRI).

There is not one specific log in or password for IHS employees. If you are specifically interested in “FedVRI” information, each employee can access the FedVRI service in a couple of different ways:

  1. If you have a Video Phone (any type!) you simply dial 877-689-7775 and you will be connected with a FedVRI interpreter
  2. If you do not have a Video Phone, you need either a computer or laptop with a web camera.
    1. To download the software, visit the Federal Video Relay Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving  web site
    2. After you have downloaded and installed the software, you will need to register for a 10 digit number. Call 877-689-7775 to reach the FedVRI interpreter.

Once you connect to the FedVRI interpreter they will ask you which agency you are calling from, at which time you will tell them you are with the Indian Health Service. It is also helpful to provide the interpreter with your agency’s 4 digit code (which is established to help Sprint to differentiate between agencies) - IHS’s 4 digit code is 7510. Providing this number will help the interpreter find your agency in the system much more quickly.

Operating Hours are 7am to 11pm Eastern Standard Time (EST), Monday to Friday (including holidays).

International Calls:
All VRS must either originate or terminate in the United States and/ or US territories.

To place an international call, the caller must begin or end the call within the United States and/or US territories.

The Sign language interpreter must then be given the telephone number to connect with the meeting or hearing individual in order to provide the ASL services.

In the case of interviewing job applicants, the applicant must be physically present to utilize the services of the Federal Relay Sign language Interpreter.

* Please note: A job applicant cannot have access to the software or the IHS 4 digit code.

The IHS interviewing Supervisor / Manager(s) must make the connection for them.

More information and instructions can be found at Federal Video Relay Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving  web site.