Blog Home
Blog Main Page
RSS Feed
RSS Link to Postings


Stroke PatientAs the third leading cause of death in the United States, stroke affects all our lives and is an important topic for medical interpreters to understand. Stroke is also extremely complex, with numerous risk factors, warning signals, and types.

On Saturday, March 5, 2011, CultureSmart will host a medical interpreter training workshop with Judith Welch Clark, RN, BSN, the stroke service nurse at Boston Medical Center. Judith will discuss critical aspects of stroke – from risk factors to ongoing therapies after release – and look at the interpreter’s roles in caring for stroke patients.

The interview below introduces you to Judith and her tremendous clinical knowledge of stroke. We’ve bolded key terminology, linking some words to further information. To join us on Saturday, March 5, please visit this link to register. Read the rest of this entry »

CCHI Certification for Healthcare Interpreters Now Available

Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters

Certified Stamp of ApprovalThe Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters offers two examinations for healthcare interpreters. Applications are now being accepted for testing dates in 2011.

Associate Healthcare Interpreter (AHI)
The CCHI Associate Healthcare Interpreter™ credential is the first credential, the foundation credential for all healthcare interpreters. Once a healthcare interpreter receives his/her CCHI Associate Healthcare Interpreter™ credential, s/he is eligible to apply for a language specific credential in one or more languages in which s/he interprets. Read the rest of this entry »

Q&A on Healthcare Interpreter Certification

Certification Commission for Healthcare InterpretersNational Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters

At CultureSmart, we’ve been thinking about – and preparing for – medical interpreter certification for years. The Q&A in this blog entry offers background on healthcare interpreter certification plus our thoughts on how certification will benefit interpreters, patients, and the health care industry.

What is the status of medical interpreter certification in the U.S.?
National certification is a long way off, but there’s a nation wide wave of interest in certification, thanks to a movement that started several years ago. Currently, the largest impediment to the adoption of certification is that most stakeholders – hospitals, providers, patients, even interpreters – either don’t fully grasp what medical interpreter certification would mean or don’t see justification for it.

In addition, the powers-that-be in health care – decision makers, funders and even, to some extent, regulatory and accreditation agencies – were not or are not completely “on board” with certification. Read the rest of this entry »

Health Information Translations on the Web

Health Information Translations There is a vast amount of multilingual resources available on the web, most can be unreliable. We have been using the Health Information Translations site for a few years and find it to be a fairly reliable source for obtaining translations of the most common medical conditions and medical procedures.

Risk Management for Healthcare Interpreters Summary Slides

Note From Greg:

Hello All,

I love challenges. That’s why I decided to write a little more this month about the revision of our The Essential Piece training manual and the new vocabulary words and knowledge it brings to our interpreter-trainees. We added many of the new terms to reflect changes in medical practices. As CultureSmart sees things, if words are important to medicine, they’re important to interpreters. We want to help our trainees meet the challenges of our field, a discipline that changes constantly and requires endless, daily study. The dozens and dozens of new words in our manual are just one more way CultureSmart-trained interpreters can distinguish themselves as competent professionals with up-to-date skills and knowledge. We realize that more words means more work but, in some ways, we see CultureSmart as a niche program. We may require more homework and effort than other training courses, but we think our program offers more payoffs, too. The reason? New understanding of medicine through new terminology like doula, CMO, cochlear implant, cryotherapy, botulism, lancinating, bradykinesia, dysphasia, fibromyalgia, tetanus, Tourette’s syndrome…

Be In Touch,


Spanish-language brochure offers diabetes information

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has released a Spanish-language guide to help educate Hispanic patients about type 2 diabetes. The pamphlet covers ways to control diabetes and reviews 13 brand-name and 10 generic oral medications that treat the illness. Forbes/HealthDay News

National Coalition charts path for Healthcare Interpreter Certification

June 13, 2008
NCHCIC Coordinating Committee
(916) 444-1506

National Coalition charts path for Healthcare Interpreter Certification

CHICAGO – Members of a nationwide coalition of non-profit associations, language-service companies, hospitals, consumer groups and educators last week committed to developing a single national certification in medical interpreting. Read the rest of this entry »

Special Wellness Section in the "New York Times"

Today’s New York Times includes a special section, Well, that provides health information covering the human body from brain to toe.

The “Well” articles are a great way for interpreters to review their knowledge about individual body parts and learn more about studies and common recommendations for maintaining health.

The Well home page also includes links to health quizzes and calculators.

New York Times Health Guide

By far, one of the most useful links for  medical interpreters who want to improve their understanding of more commonly used medical terms, conditions, procedures, etc.