Medical interpreters are generally used in hospitals, doctor’s offices, courts, conferences and any other medical area where the patient can’t speak the native language. Medical interpreting is a subset of public service interpreting, consisting of communication, among medical personnel and the patient and his or her family. A medical interpreter is a very important person in the hospital, who’s role is to interpret the medical information so that the doctor is able to communicate important medical information to their patients.
Medical interpreter works in real time settings with patients who do not know the country’s main language. The interpreter must understand medical terminology, procedures, and convey them to the patient within a cultural environment, so that the patient will understand. He bridges the language barrier between the doctor and the patient and the interpreter must translate both questions and answers, so that medical care remains consistent, despite the language barrier. By this way, medical interpreter helps in solving miscommunication between the doctor and the patient. He also makes patients feel more comfortable and secure about their treatment. The effectiveness of the interpreter’s ability to communicate is essential to the health and safety of the patient.
Medical interpreter must have strong knowledge of medicine, common medical procedures, the patient’s review, the medical examination processes, ethics, and the daily workings of the hospital, because misinterpretation can have negative effect on the health of the patient.
A basic understanding of the human needs and emotions along with strong sense of community service and participation are essential for providing the medical interpretation services.