New England Translators Association
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January meeting - Preserving the Quality of Patient Care While Using Technology in Medical Interpreting

  • 23 Jan 2016
  • 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
  • Boston University CELOP

Medical interpreting has changed a lot over time. Nowadays when you apply for a medical interpreting job, it will certainly require that you interpret on the phone, via video, and in person. This presentation will focus on the complexity and advantages and disadvantages of each interpreting mode as well as the interpreting theories behind them. It's clear that technology is incredibly useful. Most providers now can access an interpreter with the push of a button. There is less waiting time for patients' appointments.

But how does technology affect the daily work of a medical interpreter? Why is it that the interpreting default mode seems to be phone or video interpreting? Which cases should require an interpreter in person, and why? What can the consequences of this new default mode be, and at what cost?

These questions point to how essential it is that a protocol be put into practice so that English-speakinig staff as well as medical interpreters learn when to use the interpreting modalities and so protect and promote quality of patient care.

Our speaker, Isabel Pinto Franco, holds a degree in Modern Languages and Literatures (German and English Studies) from the University of Coimbra (Portugal). She is a staff interpreter at the Cambridge Health Alliance, teaches Interpreting II at Boston University, and also works as a translator. Isabel has participated as a panelist as well as a presenter in several interpreting conferences. She is a member of the ATA and holds CoreCHI certification. She was born and raised in Coimbra, Portugal and has been working as a full-time medical interpreter for the past 20 years.


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