Ensuring patient privacy and confidentiality is critical for healthcare providers. Non-compliance with various laws comes with stiff consequences, including financial penalties, harm to the organization’s reputation, and more.
Complying with applicable laws and regulations also extends beyond the core healthcare team. Just as healthcare providers need to follow the rules and embrace confidentiality best practices, maintaining patient privacy in healthcare interpreting is similarly essential.
Medical interpreters – including those secured through a language services provider – are part of the broader healthcare team, and their actions impact patients and healthcare organizations alike. When choosing a language service provider, ensuring it can offer complete confidentiality in medical interpretation is an essential part of the selection criteria. Here’s what you need to know about dealing with protected health information (PHI) and interpreters correctly.
Ensuring Confidentiality in Medical Interpretation Services
Legal Requirements for Interpreter Confidentiality
Just as healthcare providers are bound by specific laws and regulations, interpreters also must align their approach with applicable rules. For example, medical professionals must follow the mandates outlined in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). HIPAA compliance and interpreters also need to go hand-in-hand to protect patient privacy.
Additional federal and state laws can also apply to healthcare professionals and medical interpreters alike. Their precise nature can vary depending on the exact situation, as well as the patient’s, provider’s, and interpreter’s locations. Medical interpreters are commonly well-versed in laws that apply while providing services, allowing them to ensure compliance throughout and after the services are rendered.
Maintaining Patient Privacy in Interpretation
Reputable language service providers make sure that every provided medical interpreter completely understands the applicable regulations. Additionally, they commonly supply training to keep medical interpreters up-to-date on new laws as they’re put in place. In turn, the medical interpreters know that ensuring confidential information is appropriately protected is a must, as well as how to appropriately handle the PHI they encounter while providing services.
Professional medical interpretation service providers similarly make sure that any technology used in the process is appropriately secured. For example, video interpretation will use systems that prevent unauthorized parties from accessing the video or audio feeds, ensuring communication remains private at all times.
Leading providers also factor in ethical considerations in healthcare language services. Medical interpreters they provide typically align their actions with an interpreter code of ethics, which covers not just confidentiality but a variety of best practices designed to support a positive experience for all participants. Along with maintaining patient privacy, interpreters will ensure accuracy by conveying content in ways that reflect the spirit and intention of what’s shared. Additionally, there’s a focus on completeness, causing them to cover everything that’s discussed without omitting, altering, or adding any details. Medical interpreters also embrace professionalism by keeping a non-judgmental mindset throughout the process.
Do You Need Reputable Medical Interpreters to Support Your Healthcare Organization?
Experienced, reputable medical interpreters understand the importance of maintaining confidentiality and patient privacy throughout the interpretation process, as well as after the conversations are complete. Plus, they help healthcare organizations communicate with diverse patients more effectively, leading to better outcomes and improving patient experiences.
At Acutrans, our medical interpretation team members undergo robust training to ensure they follow all relevant laws and regulations regarding patient confidentiality and privacy. Our experienced medical interpretation team covers more than 200 languages, making them an asset to healthcare organizations that work with diverse patients. Additionally, Acutrans has an industry-specific interpretation service for the healthcare industry, ensuring all medical interpreters provided have the necessary healthcare background to perform effectively and convey information accurately. Our medical interpretation services include on-site, over the phone, or using video remote options, providing healthcare organizations with much-needed agility.
If your medical facility also needs access to top-quality medical translators, Acutrans can cover more than 300 languages. Additionally, our team provides certified document translations in 24 hours. Along with general transition services, Acutrans has a translation program that’s designed explicitly for the medical sector, ensuring the translators have the right healthcare background to ensure accuracy. By partnering with a leading medical language services provider, your healthcare organization can eliminate language barriers and communicate effectively with patients, leading to a better experience for both patients and providers. If you’re searching for a reliable, professional language services solution, contact us for a free quote today.