How to Use the DHS website
The DHS website is full of useful information, but you have to know how to find it. This page will help you make the most of your visits to the DHS site. There is a list of Basic Terms at the bottom of the page. These words are also highlighted as underlined in blue font (links) in the text below.
The picture below is of the DHS homepage. Features of the webpage are lettered A through P. The text describes these features and uses the same letters.
By taking a few minutes to familiarize yourself with the information on this page, you will be able to move around the DHS website more easily to find what you are looking for.
If your computer is connected to a printer, you may also print a paper version of this information by clicking on this underlined text: DHS Website Navigation Guide, selecting "open," and then using your keyboard keys—hold down the “Ctrl” key while “P” is pressed—to print.
How the DHS website is arranged
The DHS website (section) is a big part of the Allegheny County website. The DHS website is divided into sections. Each section has sub-sections. Each sub-section has a wide variety of content.
The section titles are:
Basic Needs, Children, Young Adults, Older Adults, Disabilities, Individual and Community Health, Contracted Providers and About DHS.
The section titles are contained:
- in the DHS main menu (darker blue) bar that horizontally crosses the DHS section of the website.
- in the left menu bar section title (gold) blocks at the top of each left menu bar .
Sub-section titles are:
- made visible by placing the cursor over the section titles in the DHS main menu bar and viewing the dropdown menu that appears.
- contained in the left menu bar on every page in a section.
How to move around through the DHS website
How to return to the DHS homepage
No matter what page of the DHS website you are on, you can return to the DHS homepage if you:
- move your mouse so that the cursor is located above “Department of Human Services” found on the center of the white horizontal DHS title bar toward the top of the page and click the left mouse button
- Move your mouse so that the cursor is located above little house tab on the left side of the white horizontal DHS title bar toward the top of the page and click the left mouse button.
- move your mouse so that the cursor is located above the DHS logo found in the upper right corner of the page and click the left mouse button.
How to go to a section homepage
No matter what page of the DHS website you are on, you can always return to a section homepage by moving your mouse so that the cursor is located above the words contained in the DHS main menu (darker blue) bar at the top of the page and clicking the left mouse button.
Where are the links?
- Any word that is blue/underlined is a link.
- Visited links will turn purple/underlined .
All the words in the blue horizontal bars across the top of every page contain links.
- The upper Allegheny County main menu (darkest blue) bar contains links to the Allegheny County section of the website.
- The lower DHS main menu (darker blue) bar contains links to the section homepages on the DHS site.
Any words that are contained in a deeper-colored block are links.
All the words in the gold blocks on the left menu bars contain links.
All the words in the dark blue blocks on the right menu bars contain links.
All words contained in either the left or right menu bar are links.
Any word or picture that, when rolled-over, causes the cursor arrow () to change to the cursor hand () is a link.
How can you see what type of information is included in a section?
Moving your cursor () over the DHS main menu section title blocks (in the darker blue bars) will cause a dropdown menu to appear. The dropdown menu contains links to related information contained in that section and other sections.
Once you are in a section, the left menu bar contains links to related information found in that section and other sections.
How to find a service
How to search the Allegheny County website for information
Step 1. Think of a keyword or basic phrase to describe what you are looking for.
Step 2. Move your mouse so that the cursor is located above “Search Site” found on the Allegheny County main menu (darkest blue) bar at the top of the page and click on the left mouse button.
Step 3. Type your word or phrase into the window and click on the "Search" button.
The list that is returned will include anything on the Allegheny County website (including DHS) that matches your keyword or phrase.
You may fine tune your search by selecting "Advanced Search" and filling in the appropriate windows.
How to find a provider of a specific service in your area
You can call 2-1-1 for information about social and human services in southwestern Pa.
Other helpful information
How to go back to a page you just viewed
If you decide you want to return to a webpage you just visited, you can click the Back or Forward button to do so. The Back and Forward buttons are located in the top left-hand corner of your browser screen.
You can also return to the page you just visited by putting the cursor on the page and pressing the "Backspace" button on your keyboard.
How to find out what's happening at DHS or send us a comment
DHS is linked to Facebook and Twitter. By linking into either of these networks you can be kept aware of DHS happenings. The links to Facebook and Twitter are located on the center of the white horizontal bar at the top of the each page right next to the “Department of Human Services” title.
How to go to the Allegheny County homepage
No matter what page of the DHS website you are on, there are two ways to go to the Allegheny County homepage.
- Click on the Allegheny County logo found in the upper left corner of the page.
- Click on “Home” found at the bottom left corner of the page.
How to get to the DHS homepage from the Allegheny County homepage.
Step 1. Click on “Departments” in the Allegheny County main menu (darkest blue) bar toward the top of the page.
Step 2. Click on “Human Services” under the heading “Health & Human Services.”
How to change the size of the text
On entire page (for Windows users):
To increase size: Use the keyboard keys: Hold down the "Ctrl" key as the "+" key is pressed.
To reduce size: Use the keyboard keys: Hold down the "Ctrl" key as the "-" key is pressed.
On main content block:
Use AAA on right end of the Allegheny County main menu (darkest blue) bar near top of page.
- The left-most "A" will reduce the size of the text.
- The right-most "A" will increase the size of the text.
Learn how to change text size or colors of the web page
Click - “Click” refers to depressing either the right or left button on a “mouse” to activate links. When using a webpage, the left button is usually the correct one to press.
Cursor - The "cursor" lets you know the location of your mouse pointer. The cursor has three styles:
- The arrow () – The arrow indicates where your mouse is pointing. It appears when the mouse hovers over space with no links. Clicking while an arrow is showing will do nothing.
- The hand () – The hand appears when the text or graphic beneath it is a link. Left clicking on the words or graphic will follow the link.
- The vertical bar () – The vertical bar appears over text that is not a link. By holding down the left mouse button and dragging the bar over text, text can be highlighted. That text may then be copied (keyboard keys: Hold down "Ctrl" key as "C" is pressed) and pasted (keyboard keys: Hold down "Ctrl" key as "V" is pressed) onto another document. Links may be copied by going just outside of “hand” range to cause an “I” to appear instead.
Link – A "link" is a place on the page that is a virtual door to more information. Any word or picture that, when rolled over, causes the cursor arrow () to change to the cursor hand () is a link.
Mouse – the "mouse" is the devise that is used to move the cursor around on the page. Moving the mouse, moves the cursor in the same direction. The left button on the mouse permits the user to activate (follow) links and highlight text.
By using the left “mouse” button to click on any link, you will be taken to a webpage or document with related information.