Avoiding Language Discrimination: Interpretation and Translation Civil Rights Laws Remain Intact

One aspect of this international health crisis that should stick in our minds is the fact that maintenance of public health means all members of the public. Viruses do not discriminate. To be successful in mitigating them, public health initiatives should not, either.

To this end, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has provided a bulletin to ensure that entities covered by civil rights authorities know that civil rights laws around language are not set aside during an emergency.

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Three Areas Where Pharmacies Can Overcome Language Barriers

Like physicians, pharmacies play an important role in empowering patients to take charge of their health.

Unfortunately, language barriers often make it more difficult for non-English speaking customers to ask important questions about their medication, take it as directed, and be aware of potential side effects.

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Here's Price Can Be Misleading Comparing Language Service Providers

When it comes to investing in language interpretation and translation, “price” and “cost” are two very different things.

Price is obviously one of the biggest factors when making a business decision. But when choosing a language service provider (LSP) to interpret the various business languages you serve, there is more to price than meets the eye.  

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CASE STUDY: How a Diverse New York School District Juggles 23 Languages with an Inspiring Access Program

Middletown schools blend over-the-phone, video, and face-to-face interpreting, as well as translation, to drive new levels of understanding between students, parents, and educators.

Middletown City School District (New York) places great value on diversity. Appreciating the eclectic nature of its student body is an active area of focus that sets the district apart nationally. As you’ll read in our new case study, Middletown goes far beyond minimum compliance requirements in an effort to level the academic playing field for English language learners (ELLs).

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LINER NOTES: Why Interpreters ‘Make Really Lousy Spies’

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Establishing Equality: Why We Provide Language Access Solutions

Why?

When you do something every day, you tend to lose perspective from time to time. It’s the nature of work that we get so close to what we do that we sometimes forget why we’re doing it.

Three recent news items have refreshed our perspective and reminded us of our “why.” They prompt us to remember that what we do each day is actually pretty remarkable.

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Eight Steps Medicare Plans Can Take to Enroll More Limited-English Speakers

This year’s open-enrollment period for Medicare will run from October 15 through December 7. Studies show that a large number of Medicare enrollees are considered limited English proficient (LEP), meaning they speak English “less than very well” and are entitled to assistance.

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Open Enrollment is Coming. Here Are Six Things Insurers Can Do to Improve Communication with Non-English Speakers

Healthcare Open Enrollment Period is coming soon. Starting Nov. 1, plans participating in the Health Insurance Marketplace will be flooded with inquiries. Agents are no doubt readying themselves for questions in every shape and form. 

But are they prepared to field these same questions in a variety of languages?

This is an altogether different matter – one that has a great deal to do with providing an ideal customer experience and reaching a previously underserved market.

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Language Training for Medical Staff Can Keep Health Care from Getting Lost in Translation

A non-English-speaking mother-to-be arrives at a hospital to give birth, unaware that her pregnancy is high-risk. The clinic where she had her pre-natal appointments did not use professional interpreters. Instead the clinic relied on the serious news being conveyed by the woman’s sister-in-law, who did not have the heart to explain the diagnosis. The woman is told at the hospital that her child will not make it.

A 9-year-old Vietnamese girl arrives at the emergency room with what appears to be a severe stomach flu. The girls’ parents do not speak English. Instead of using a professional interpreter, hospital staff instead speaks only to the girl and her 16-year-old brother about her prescription, sending them home with instructions that the girl should return if she experiences specific side effects. The girl ends up having a negative reaction to the drug. She suffers a heart attack and dies.

These real-life outcomes seem as if they should have happened in days gone by. Sadly, these events took place recently. Even worse, they are not uncommon despite readily available on-demand language services.

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Does Your Interpreter Training Program Have These Essentials?

Whether you have bilingual employees or use interpreters in your contact center, they are an extension of your organization—for better or for worse.

How confident are you that they are communicating clearly to your customers?

There are only two ways to know for sure: Be fluent in multiple languages yourself, or ensure your in-house interpreters have been tested and properly trained.

Whether you have an interpreter training program in place now or are looking to implement one, be sure it includes these five essential elements.

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