Although many different groups of people continue to come to Florida, Hispanics/Latinos are the largest linguistic minority. As per the last census Hispanics/Latinos represent 17 percent of the total population in the state, and this is expected to increase to close to 25 percent by 2030. The complexity of the health care setting, an inadequate number of bilingual/bicultural health care providers and the time that it takes for adults to acquire a new language make medical interpretation a necessity.
Medical interpreting services can reduce language and cultural barriers, as well as increase adherence to treatment by improving the health care encounter between providers and patients. Other demonstrated benefits of medical interpreting are decreased misdiagnosis and liability; cost effectiveness; better use of time; improved patient flow; reduction of no shows; retention of both patients and providers; and better health outcomes for patients with limited/no English speaking skills.
Gulfcoast South AHEC, Inc. offers a 10-15 hour course in medical interpreting. The course is appropriate for bilingual persons (Spanish/English) who interpret in a health care setting or are interested in working or volunteering as interpreters.
To obtain more information about Medical Interpreting, contact: Gulfcoast South AHEC, Inc., at (941) 361-6602.