A message to healthcare providers in this challenging time – please, don’t forget about medical interpreters!

Dear healthcare providers,

We are deeply grateful to you for your tireless work and personal sacrifices to do everything you can to care for patients right now.

We all need each other now like never before. A successful, coordinated response to COVID-19 depends on us working together—and that means all of us, regardless of what language we speak.

Clear, effective communication is essential to combating the coronavirus. In the rush to respond to unprecedented need, please be sure to include professional medical interpreters on your care team.

Patients with limited English proficiency are especially vulnerable. Without professional medical interpreters, they may not be able to follow your care instructions, or understand important concepts such as social distancing. Providing professional medical interpreting is not only required by law—it makes healthcare more effective and efficient. Studies show that professional medical interpreters:

  • Shorten hospital stays
  • Reduce re-admissions
  • Lower the cost of care

With need growing and resources scarce, using professional interpreter services is now even more crucial. Consider interpreters for the following:

  • Community announcements and screenings
  • In-person appointments
  • Tele-health visits
  • Hospitalization and in-patient care
  • Family meetings
  • Patient education sessions
  • Pre-operative screenings and consenting

For safety and convenience, medical interpreting is readily available via phone and videoconferencing. If you do not have access to professional medical interpreting services for your team, please get in touch with us. We will be happy to interpret for you, or connect you with a provider who can best meet your language access needs.

“We know from the data that use of professional interpreters can eliminate disparities for patients not fluent in English. The pandemic crisis will likely require widespread use of remote medical interpreting.”

Eric J. Hardt, MD, Board member, Found in Translation

We are in this together, regardless of what language we speak.

Thank you,

Maria Vertkin and the Found in Translation community

Photo by Luis Melendez on Unsplash

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  1. […] How you can help: We have put out a PSA about the importance of including medical interpreters on COVID-19 response teams. Please read it and share […]