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Is Your Organization Ready for New Language-Access Laws Coming in 2018?

Posted by Suzy duMont-Perez on December 4, 2017

You may not realize it, but two laws aimed at improving communication with limited-English-proficient (LEP) beneficiaries will go into effect in 2018.

If yours is a home-health agency seeking to participate in Medicare or a health-insurance company that offers plans for employees, you will want to pay attention to these new laws so as to stay in compliance.

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Measuring the ROI of Language Services in Health Care

Posted by Matthew Riley on December 1, 2017

A Somali man rushes into the emergency room with his young son, who has fallen from the balcony of their second-story apartment. Although the boy has no visible injuries, his father is concerned he may have a concussion and internal bleeding. He tries frantically to communicate with emergency room personnel using gestures and the few English phrases he has learned since moving to the United States six months before.

The triage nurse quickly places a video call to a Somali interpreter, who can relay the man’s concerns to her. Within minutes, the boy undergoes a CAT scan and receives appropriate treatment and monitoring. He is able to return home with his father later that evening.

Without video remote interpreting, this scenario could have played out much differently. While other industries demand to see a return on investment in hard dollars, the ROI of language services in health care is often measured by the absence of something.

Here are seven ways healthcare professionals measure the impact of their investment in language services.

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Why Onsite Interpreters Charge a Two-Hour Minimum

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on November 21, 2017

When Alice went down the rabbit hole and into Wonderland in the children’s fable, all perception was distorted. Large things appeared small, and vice versa.

A similar perception issue tends to affect well-meaning health care providers when they schedule an onsite interpreter. An appointment they envision will take just a short time is very often in reality a much bigger commitment than anticipated.

The question of an onsite interpreter’s two-hour minimum is a reasonable one to ask. Clients often inquire why they must pay for two hours when they feel they only need the interpreter for 30 minutes. Why can’t the health care provider simply pay onsite interpreters for the time they work?

Though it often catches clients by surprise, the two-hour minimum is fairly standard. First and foremost, the practice exists to protect the client from unforeseen costs, as well as to support the patient experience.

Clients typically project an appointment will take 20-30 minutes; however, after checking into a clinic, sitting in the waiting room, visiting with the physician, and checking out, most appointments average around 85 minutes.

Consider the following:

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When to Work with an Onsite Interpreter

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on November 20, 2017

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Free Webinar: Onsite & Video Remote Interpreting - How to Choose the Appropriate Modality

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on November 8, 2017

To use an onsite interpreter or not to use an onsite interpreter?

This is a frequent question in healthcare settings when tending to patients who are limited English proficient (LEP), deaf, or hard-of-hearing. The advent of over-the-phone interpreting (OPI) and video remote interpreting (VRI) has given healthcare providers multiple options when it comes to providing these patients with the language access to which they are entitled.

These providers are left wondering: Do we still need to work with onsite interpreters? The answer is an unequivocal “yes.”

In what instances are onsite interpreters still recommended? This question will be addressed in full during our upcoming webinar, “Onsite and Video Remote Interpreting: Choosing the Appropriate Modality,” which will take place Thursday, Nov. 16, at 2 p.m. ET.  

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Why Language Services Are Critical to the Future of Retail

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 28, 2017

The news this year has been filled with headlines about the “retail apocalypse,” a wave of bankruptcies, store closures and layoffs sweeping the retail sector. But while the situation is critical, it’s possible that reports of brick-and-mortar retail’s death have been greatly exaggerated.

It’s true that online shopping presents a challenge to traditional stores, but only a few of the biggest names in retail are online-only, and even that is changing as giants like Amazon and smaller companies like Warby Parker make forays into the physical world. In addition, consumers continue to prefer shopping in-store, including 70 percent of millennials and 77 percent of Gen Z.

As retailers figure out strategies to survive and thrive, one factor that might not seem obvious to consider is adding language services. Why? 

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Vital Signs: ASL Interpreters Are A Connection to the Deaf Community That Should Not Be Compromised

Posted by Jorge Ungo on September 22, 2017

It is International Week of the Deaf, a time to raise global awareness about the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing communities.

This is as good a time as any to say the following: If your organization interacts in any way with the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing, and you are relying upon gestures or lip reading to communicate with them, then you are not meeting the needs of a community that is 48 million strong. It’s that simple.

All organizations that interact with the public should be aware of these communities and be prepared to communicate effectively. Here are a few important facts you should know:

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‘Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt’ Should Be a Red Flag for Local Governments When It Comes to Sign-Language Interpreting

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on September 21, 2017

If you’ve been on social media lately, you’re likely familiar with the “Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt,” who by now is as omnipresent on Twitter as “The Man in the Yellow Hat” is in children’s books.

The differences between the two could not be starker. Whereas the latter is a rational-minded fictional character that chased after Curious George and cleaned up after his mayhem, the former is no laughing matter, as he could have inadvertently caused real-life mayhem of his own despite his best efforts to be helpful.

The Lifeguard in the Yellow Shirt has endured a great deal of ridicule, but the responsibility for using a qualified interpreter truly lies with the public entity whose constituency relies upon it to build language access into its overall communication strategy.

Here is what happened:

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Tips for Working With an Onsite Interpreter

Posted by Scott Brown on July 28, 2017

Just like any other aspect of an important meeting, working with an onsite interpreter requires preparation and an eye for some key details.

Here are some things you can do before, during and after your meeting to make sure you communicate successfully.

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Should You Use Phone, Onsite, or Video Remote Interpreting?

Posted by The LanguageLine Solutions Team on December 23, 2016

Having more options than at any other time in history is generally a good thing, but the “paradox of choice” has a tendency to paralyze us. (As the famous jam study illustrated, consumers were much more likely to buy a jar of jam when they saw only six options, compared to 24.)

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