Healthcare Interpreting: Ensures Clarity in Clinical Environments

Interpreters are fast becoming recognized around the world as key and highly valuable members of healthcare teams – in hospitals, clinics, private offices, rehabilitation centers and nursing homes. Their responsibilities have evolved significantly over the last decade and are changing everywhere as our world continues to globalize.

If a patient is hard of hearing or not fluent in the predominant language of the healthcare culture or its providers, it is nearly impossible for even the most skilled clinician to provide medical care without assistance from a qualified interpreter who is familiar with medical terminology and able to act as a cultural bridge.

LATN has 20 years’ experience serving in healthcare environments, particularly in the Atlanta, Georgia area. We provide interpreting in more than 130 languages, including sign language, and can perform the services either in-person, by phone or video. Due to our customer-centric culture, we are flexible and work with clients to develop processes that meet their needs and bring positive results.

LATN Healthcare Interpreting

  • We provide interpreting on-site and remotely by phone or video (via computers, laptops, tablets, smart phones).
  • Our interpreters must undergo LATN training in medical interpreting, which emphasizes the Code of Ethics and industry best practices.
  • We strictly enforce the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy policies.
  • Many LATN interpreters hold certifications through the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI) and the International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA).

Importance of Healthcare Interpreters

Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act requires that all recipients of federal funds – Medicaid agencies, managed care plans and hospitals – provide interpreting assistance as needed, free of charge. Title VI has been reinforced over the years by numerous federal and state rulings.

Research* shows that language barriers in clinical environments can lead to:

  • Misdiagnosis or difficulty in diagnosing a patient due to lack of cultural understanding.
  • Poor understanding of diagnosis, treatment and medical instructions
  • Reduced understanding of and compliance with recommended treatments and follow-up
  • Increased likelihood of serious medical events
  • Reduced patient satisfaction

*Masland, Mary C., et al. “Use of Communication Technologies to Cost-Effectively Increase the Availability of Interpretation Services in Healthcare Settings.” Telemedicine Journal and E-Health 16(6) (2010): 739-745.

Call 1.800.943.LATN any time of day or night – to gain assistance from one of our more than 1,000 interpreters located worldwide.