177884 Utilization of Trained Medical Interpreters: Results of a survey

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Michael Tutty, MHA , Commonwealth Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Shrewsbury, MA
Lisa Morris, MSTD , Commonwealth Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Shrewsbury, MA
The regional AHEC offices have been the traditional vehicle of dissemination for the medical interpreter training program sponsored by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services. The medical interpreter training program was a response by the Office of Medicaid to MassHealth providers that had difficulty providing quality care services to the limited English speaking patients. The idea of hiring a dedicated full-time or part-time interpreter for this provider pool wasn't even a possibility due to limited budgets. The Commonwealth responded with the assistance of the Office of Community Programs and the Mass Health Access Programs to provide training for qualified bilingual employees to receive interpreter skill training as well as to reinforce their medical terminology language base in the source and target language. To date the AHECs have trained over 1000 interpreters throughout the Commonwealth and other states.

A multi-tool survey implemented during a period of six months. Surveys were collected electronically and on paper. Links to the survey were disseminated via email to all former graduates of our programs according to our enrollment database. Letters and paper surveys were distributed to stakeholders to promote awareness.

Based on results, we are able to conclude that we are reaching the desired market of employees. The curriculum is reaching the needs of the participants. Finally as a result of training dual role employees and others, we are addressing the initial need raised by providers to be able to communicate with their limited English speaking patients to provide quality health care.

Learning Objectives:
To determine the utilization of trained bilingual dual role employees as interpreters on the job after having participated in the medical interpreter training programs delivered throughout the Commonwealth by the six regional Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) during the past five years.

Keywords: Interpreters, Training

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Director of the Office of Community Programs, the office responsible for delivering medical interpreter training and the survey highlighted in project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.