Medical records are difficult to translate, but it’s always worth the money and effort. Proper medical treatment is something that, according to Polish law, should be provided to every citizen, no matter the wealth, status or social position. Of course, in reality, it is not always that simple but, as a principle, medical care should be available for everyone. When it comes to seeking help for foreign patients, things can easily get complicated.
As we have mentioned before, medical translation is a very responsible job. A simple mistake can lead to malpractice. That is why we have to pose ourselves a vital question: why do medical institutions need the services of professional translators?
A language barrier can undermine even the best intentions on both sides of a conversation. It is not a problem when one discusses a film or an event gone by, but when it comes to health issues, everything has to be crystal clear. In Poland, we have more and more guests from such countries as Vietnam, China, Turkey, India, Pakistan, Belarus and Ukraine. Not all of them communicate fluently in English or Polish, and when the patient cannot describe the symptoms clearly, it is really difficult to diagnose anything properly.
Translating medical records is a way to solve such a problem. With the data from such records, the doctor can learn about the past health problems of the patient, medical history of prescribed drugs and much more.
When it comes to treating someone, precision is essential. If the doctor misunderstands the patient, the result is usually a wrong diagnosis. The more dangerous the condition is, the worse the consequences can be. Also, imagine a foreigner that would understand the esoteric medical lingo in Polish. Those words can be difficult to understand even for a native speaker!
Hiring a professional to prepare a proper translation can save time, money and sometimes even lives of medical patients. Medical centres should not expect that each foreign patient will appear to their doorstep accompanied by a Polish or an English-speaking person.
An expert who deals with medical translations daily can provide professional help for both sides of the conversation. The terms regarding physiology or anatomy usually are not in our day-to-day dictionary. And if the message is still too difficult for the patient to comprehend, a professional can try to simplify it without losing the essence.
Stress itself fuels every sickness. The more stressed the patient is, the harder it is to get them cured. When doctor’s orders seem enigmatic, the hospital information system looks unfamiliar, those things fuel anxiety and complicate an already problematic situation. Stress can often lead to mistakes of the medical staff as well.
Let’s picture such a situation: a patient is delivered to the ER, time is of the essence, and first decisions can affect the whole treatment. That is when each word spoken and written has to be crystal clear and precise. There is no room for misunderstandings when a life is on the line.
Of course, it would not be possible to put a translator in every ambulance, but a properly prepared facility, working with language professionals, will be prepared for such a scenario.
Last but not least: the information system in the medical centre. From leaflets, through door sings and redirections to the website and mobile app. All of those elements should be multilingual. A company that provides medical care for a wide variety of patients puts its reputation on the line.
Satisfied patients will recommend their services to their friends and family, and nothing matters more than trust in medicine. It is much easier to gain it when one reaches out to the client by adjusting the communication to their needs. To make it happen, the best way is to hire a professional language service company, experienced in work with medical records.