Medical jargon can often be difficult to understand, but imagine the challenges if you don’t even speak English. Understanding how to care for yourself or a loved one during a difficult time can instantly become even more complex. Fortunately, through gracious donations and private grant money, an interpreter is only a button away.
The Interpreter on Wheels is a next generation tool that provides live interpretation across possible language barriers. The device works by providing a convenient method of live, one-on-one communication to patients and/or caregivers when explaining a plan of care. This new technology replaces what previously could only be done through a conference call or speaker phone.
“When we can use live video and actually show the interpreter what we’re talking about or doing, they get a visual on how to best interpret and relay the information to the family,” said Nicole Fox, NICU Lactation Consultant. “This is especially crucial when we’re trying to teach parents things like feeding and caring for a baby. They can see and explain exactly what we’re working with.”
With over 25 different languages readily available, this real-time device is available around the clock to patients in need. This service helps eliminate language barriers and ensure the best possible care.
“In my experience, it has not only helped the patient, but also the staff providing the care.” explained Nanette Gremillion, NICU Physical Therapist. “I firmly believe that the staff becomes more confident in their abilities, knowing that the family can now understand what they’re saying and what they’re doing despite the family’s language of origin.”
The mobility of the program allows for easy and quick transfer from room to room, optimizing the number of people that can be assisted. Fox and Gremillion both agree that this system is a game changer.
“There is just an added layer of assurance to the patient when they can have all of their questions answered, as well as a level of confidence to the staff knowing that the barriers that were once there are now gone,” Gremillion said. “When you’re able to communicate effectively, the level of care increases dramatically, and that’s a win/win for everyone involved.”
Currently, Woman’s operates several devices, with an Interpreter on Wheels located in the NICU, Med-Surg and Imaging. Through additional funding and added grant dollars, it is the goal to increase the number of devices available to patients.
“My personal goal is optimum care,” says Fox, “And when you’re able to provide this type of service, everyone feels better about the level of care that is provided.”
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