Translation Errors can Lead to Medical Errors

Side note: Two articles today about the issue of translation in medicine. As the U.S. population becomes more and more diverse, this is an increasing problem for doctors, practices, hospitals and pharmacies to address. The first article, from The Philadelphia Inquirer, addresses working with non-English speaking patients at your practice. As the writer explains, it is possible (and necessary) to use phone translation if live translation is unavailable. This step is vital to ensure that doctors make a correct diagnosis and that patients understand instructions. It is also an important part of protecting yourself from medical liability lawsuits due to misunderstandings with the patient.

By Rachel K. Sobel
Philadelphia Inquirer

In my six weeks here in Phoenix as a visiting resident, I have enjoyed the Southwestern culture and climate. A 90-degree day is considered cool, compared to summer’s 120-degree charm. Philly’s Taco Bell franchises are no match for the lunch counters here that sell delectable gorditas and guacamole. The greenery here is a gorgeous sprinkling of cacti.

Read the rest of the article here

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