Language Diversity Challenges Healthcare Providers:

Hospitals and healthcare facilities are struggling to effectively provide professional healthcare services to the linguistically diverse population in the United States. Language barriers prevent provider patient communication, thus resulting in substandard care and possible malpractice. Communication in healthcare is of the utmost importance, when a language barrier is present patients are not able to explain symptoms, discuss treatment options, learn about medications needed or even ask simple questions regarding their personal health. With such a lack of information needed to diagnose and treat, physicians are finding it challenging to properly and effectively care for non-English speaking patients. The surge in languages spoken in the US is only projected to rise, therefore laws have been passed aiming to eliminate discrimination as well as protect and provide for the ever growing non-English speaking population in this country. Under laws such as The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), healthcare facilities are required to provide language services to patients when needed. There is no single solution to combat the growing issue, but strategies should be tailored to the needs of specific communities and the non-English speaking patient populations within them.

Adopting, implementing, and staying on top of the duties accompanied with providing quality healthcare to non-English speaking patients is key in preventing potentially life threatening dangers language barriers can cause. If communication is not clear and language barriers are not fully bridged patient care is compromised and errors will be made. The first step is to partner with a language service company in order to establish a tailored language access plan that will effectively facilitate physician-patient communication. Caring for the millions of people in the US who speak little or no English poses huge challenges for healthcare providers, providing cost effective and time efficient language solutions, aided by technology is helping to save lives.

Language Services to Integrate into Your Healthcare Facility:

On-Site Interpretation:

On-site interpretation is recognized as the most effective form of interpretation. On-site interpretation is conducted face-to-face, allowing all individuals involved the advantage of not only hearing but seeing the interpreter. The physically presence of the interpreter allows non-verbal cues, facial expressions, body language and the overall essences of the conversation to be better understood by all parties involved. In medical situations, it’s most beneficial to schedule an on-site interpreter for pre-set doctor appointments involving the exchange of sensitive or emotionally challenging information.

Telephone Interpretation:

Telephone interpretation is best used for situations when a patient needs immediate help or if you have a relatively simple dialogue you need to engage in quickly and efficiently. Telephone interpretation is extremely helpful in situations where you’re located in a remote region and don’t have access to an on-site interpreter or if a low demand language combination is needed. It’s simple to access a telephone interpreter and through on-demand services you can be connected to an interpreter that fits your criteria with little to no wait time. This language solution is cost effective because you are only paying for the time spent with the interpreter and you’re not obligated to pay for costs associated with on-site interpretation.

Video Remote Interpreting (VRI):

Video remote interpreting (VRI) connects you with an interpreter through a sophisticated web-based platform. VRI marries the benefits of on-site interpretation with the on-demand feature of telephone interpretation. The service is easy to use and interpreters can be accessed with wait times as low as five minutes. Video remote interpretation is conducted via the internet, so it’s always possible for you to be connected with an interpreter who is fitting to your language needs. VRI provides endless communication opportunities in many different healthcare settings for the not only non-English speaking individuals but deaf patients as well. Sign language interpretation can be provided because the visual aspect of the interpretation process is kept intact through the use of video remote communication technology.

Offering a variety of language service options allows healthcare providers to better care for non-English speaking patients. Choosing the right language service based on the situation can save time, money and the lives of non-English speaking individuals living in the United States.

Niki’s Int’l Ltd. is a WBENC-Certified Women Business Enterprise with 20 years of language service experience. A global network of highly skilled interpreters and translators are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for on-site, telephonic and video remote interpretation services. Our linguists are available in over 350 languages and dialects, and our network includes certified interpreters and translators. Our work is guaranteed with a $1 Million Errors & Omissions policy, so that you can be confident that your project will be completed with the highest level of quality and professionalism within the field. For more information contact us at 1-877-567-8449 or visit our website at

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