Hospitals Implement Video Translation Service
A video-based translation service soon will be launched at two public hospitals in Contra Costa and San Mateo counties, and it could be implemented in Southern California facilities by the end of 2006, the Stockton Record reports.
The service was implemented at San Joaquin General Hospital in French Camp in October. Interpreters employed by San Joaquin General speak Spanish, Cambodian, Lao and Hmong. However, the network is capable of providing translators in more than 90 languages.
Participating hospitals use a secure, high-speed data line to connect to translators. When a non-English speaking patient arrives at one of the hospitals, a health care provider can turn on the video unit and within 15 seconds connect to a live interpreter.
The service, called the Health Care Interpreter Network, was funded by an initial $458,000 grant by the U.S. Department of Commerce Technology Opportunities Program and smaller grants from Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit, the California HealthCare Foundation, the California Consumer Protection Foundation and the University of California-San Francisco (Goldeen, Stockton Record, 1/22).