6 Reasons Why Do Hospitals Need Interpreters?

Have you any idea why do hospitals need interpreters? Interpreters are delivering life-saving services to healthcare providers.


But how? Let’s dive into this informative article to know the exact answer.

6 Reasons Why Do Hospitals Need Interpreters?

Language barriers should not be a hurdle to providing quality healthcare. Interpretation helps patients. Regardless of their native language, to get healthcare services.

Interpreters ease communication between patients with Limited English Proficiency (LEP). So too the deaf people, their physicians, nurses, and other medical staff. Moreover, Interpreters also provide Lab results translation and other services.

1. Hospitals Need Interpreters For Limited English Proficient (LEP)

Limited English Proficient; a person with little ability to read, speak, or understand English. 

Approximately 25 million Americans speak English “less than very well.” U.S. Census Bureau.

Hospitals Need Interpreters For Limited English Proficient

For LEP populations, medication adherence is lower. They’ve poorer health outcomes. And due to language barriers, they are at greater risk for medical errors.

Medical interpreters truly can fill the communication gap between providers and LEP patients.

LEP patients who got an interpreter make more prescriptions. And of course, they get higher care satisfaction.

Several patients speak Mandarin, Portuguese, Haitian Creole, Arabic, and Russian. Thus, deaf patients communicate by using American Sign Language (ASL). Indeed the Interpretation Services can improve patient safety for these millions of people.

Did you know? “Spanish is the most frequent language spoken by LEP patients.”

2. For Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Interpretation service is also for deaf patients. Some deaf people rely on sign language. And few rely on written messages. Some deaf patients can speak even though they cannot hear. It may need to provide a qualified sign language interpreter for complicated communications. 

Under ADA, hospitals must provide effective communication methods for hard-hearing patients. Included:

Sign Language Interpreters:

It is a visually interactive language. That uses a combination of hand motion, body gestures, and facial expressions also. 

Oral Interpreters:

Some hard-hearing people are experts in lip-reading. They can understand spoken words quite well with the help of an oral interpreter. 

Cued Speech Interpreters:

A cued speech interpreter uses a hand code or cue to represent each speech sound. They also use natural body-language and gestures.

Computer Assisted Real-Time Transcription (CART):

Some deaf patients are not experts in either lip-reading or sign language. CART is a service where an operator types what the patient says. And then displays the typed words on a screen.

Miscommunication can lead to inadequate patient care. And damaging claims for physicians. So, this is a must for a hospital to provide interpretation services to disabled people.

Did you know? “Marlee Martin is an American deaf actress. She relies on an interpreter for interviews and business meetings.” 

3. Hospitals Need Interpreters For Medical Staff

Most healthcare staff members are not experts in providing interpretation services.

Under ACA, doctors need to offer the services of a trained interpreter to LEP patients. Therefore, Interpreters can improve clinical outcomes. And the quality of care for non-native speakers.

Hospitals Need Interpreters For Medical Staff

Face-to-Face Interpreting:

Medical Interpreters are accountable for providing face-to-face interpreting. Between patients and providers.

Face-to-face interpretation offers the most reliable method of communication with the LEP community. 

Sometimes interpreters may also need to work with other individuals. Specifically, family members to provide cultural information to help a treatment plan.

OPI-over the phone interpreting:

Interpreting services also offer telephonic interpretation to the patients. Trained interpreters ensure a quick response for urgent situations.

All telephone interpreters undergo the same security checks. But it is not always suitable, for example, for deaf patients. 

VRI-video remote interpreting:

The use of remote video-phone applications is also an option. Interpreters also take part in on-demand Video Remote interpretation. And present visualized interpreting with audio and video. VRI is a great alternative when an in-person option is not workable.

VRI eliminates language barriers. It also ensures personal interaction in healthcare for the doctor/staff and patient. Such services should be introduced in a hospital.

Health care interpreters educate other health care team members on duties and requirements. And standards of practice involved in health care interpreting.

4. Hospitals Need Interpreters For Emergency Room Visits

Communication plays an even more critical role in the Emergency Department (ED). Emergency physicians commonly tackle problems associated with language barriers. Nonetheless, the best solution for the ED will be access to the professional Interpreter.

The Interpreter has to perform a much broader task than simple interpreting. Interpreting for Emergency Services even may present extra challenges

Understanding how best to use ER interpreters may reduce the risk of miscommunication. Also, it increases positive health outcomes. And decrease stress in emergency/trauma settings.

ER interpreters should have the highest level of training. And also be skilled in medical terminology. 

Emergency Room Visits

Working with an interpreter is vital when patients need to give valid consent for medical treatment. For example, an operation, medical or surgical procedures, or blood transfusion. 

5. Hospitals Need Interpreters For Therapy Sessions

Psychologists work with interpreters to deliver services to LEP or deaf patients. The art of interpretation regard as the cornerstone of consoling.

While in therapy sessions, the Interpreter will bond a lot with the patient. Yet, it is also imperative to maintain a professional distance.

There’s a health gap in neuropsychology and psychology. And providing interpreter services is the first step toward giving proper care.

It’s also essential for practitioners to find experienced or trained Interpreters.

6. Hospitals Need Interpreters For Mental Health Evaluations

Mental health is no anomaly. But it does present quirky challenges for interpreters and patients.

However, expressing your mental condition can be tricky. Even in your native tongue.

Without mental health interpreting services, LEP patients may find it impossible to seek help. Language barriers increase their feelings of lost control and isolation.

Hospitals Need Interpreters For Mental Health Evaluations

So mental health interpreters can help patients understand why taking pills is essential. And when to seek more healthcare help.

Benefits of Trained Medical Interpreters:

– Fewer communication errors.

– Improved patient satisfaction.

– The Interpreter may act as a cultural liaison to ensure clarity for the physician.

– The Interpreter may function as a link between patients and the health system.

– Then; Lower malpractice risk.

– Also; An interpreter may clarify patient meaning beyond language.

– Finally; The use of a trained interpreter meets the legal requirements of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act.

Throughout the U.S., interpreters are valuable members of the health care team. Their duties have evolved in the last decade. And interpreters are continuing to meet the needs.

We Speak Your Patient’s Language!

You can count on our professional interpreters to assist you. 

TheLanguageDoctor understands the keys to communicating with any language in challenging scenarios. We are compliant and certified with HIPAA and HITECH. 

We provide professional, on-demand Interpretation services that are available 24/7.

Email Us Here mail@tldinc.org, Or Call Us At 1 (202) 544-2942

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