More than 40 percent of California residents speak a language other than English. It is also a state in which there is a significant mismatch between the second languages spoken by its physicians and the primary languages spoken by its patients.
Nearly 7 million California residents are considered limited English proficient (LEP), meaning they speak English “less than very well.” At last count, nearly a quarter of the nation’s total LEP population lived in this one state. In an effort to increase access to language services for these individuals, Governor Jerry Brown recently approved California Senate Bill No. 223 Chapter 771.
Here are five significant aspects of the law and their significance to healthcare organizations throughout the nation:Read More
When a customer takes time out of their busy day to call, every second matters, because every additional second they spend on hold stands to amplify their frustration.
It’s another second they’re not getting an answer to their question, another second to dwell on their problem, and another second to consider taking their business elsewhere.
For customers who need to connect with an interpreter, the wait can be even longer – but it doesn’t have to be.
Language access has evolved as the world has become more connected. Users are surrounded by smart, multi-function devices and expect to receive service anywhere and everywhere at any time. Fortunately, new technologies ensure that customer experience keeps pace with customer expectation.
When LSPs first came on the scene more than 30 years ago, the concept of a remote interpreter was novel. Decades later, our aim is to leverage technology in reducing wait times to mere seconds to ensure an optimal user experience.
Technological innovations are enabling faster connections to over-the-phone and video interpreters. Here’s a look at three of the latest advances and the impact they’re having on improving interpreter-connect times:Read More
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.Read More
It was one year ago that a native of the Hunan province of South China traveled 6,500 miles to California’s spectacular Monterey Peninsula. Expecting to spend her time taking in the dramatic scenery, real-life drama took place when the 49-year-old accountant was felled by a massive stroke in her hotel room.
Her life was saved by the emergency room staff at Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula, but when the woman awoke, she was surrounded by doctors and nurses who did not speak her language, which is a rare Mandarin dialect.Read More
Imagine you’re a sales manager at a telecommunications retailer that just rolled out the latest and greatest smartphone. A family of four has come into the store to upgrade their phones, a sale equal to well over $1,000. However, the family only speaks Vietnamese, a language that’s not common in your region.
Fortunately, you can use a mobile app to connect with an interpreter in less than a minute. While you explain the features and benefits of the newest model, the interpreter relays the information to the family in Vietnamese, and in turn relays their questions to you. The interpreter does all of this securely from a remote office, hundreds of miles away.
Language-access clients love the idea that their customers, patients, and citizens have near-instant access to interpretation in a constellation of 240-plus languages, but they wonder about security. Is the private and personal information that is exchanged during these calls as secure as it would be if the interpreter was sitting in a brick-and-mortar call center? Furthermore, how can the quality of these remote workers be assured?
We can’t speak for all providers of language solutions, but this is how LanguageLine reconciles these issues:Read More
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?Read More
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:Read More
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:Read More
In a hospital setting, access to quality on-demand interpreting can be a matter of life and death. Interpreters must be able to relay information to physicians quickly and accurately under intense pressure while remaining calm and reassuring.
Many hospitals use onsite interpreters, but this isn’t always practical or cost-effective, particularly when a patient needs an interpreter immediately, or the patient speaks a language that is less common. In these scenarios, video remote interpreting can be a lifeline. More hospitals are using video technology to supplement onsite interpreting.
Here are five common concerns hospitals have as they contemplate video remote interpreting.