Guest blog post by Jocelyn Moreno, Spanish CHI™ and Language Access Specialist at Mosaic Medical
During a normal day of interpreting for a Mosaic Language Access Specialist, there can always be last second requests. The Lynch School-Based Health Center (SBHC) recently had a walk-in patient with a possible broken foot. Both the child and his mother needed a Spanish interpreter.
Since the main Redmond clinic where I work is nearby, I was able to be at Lynch SBHC quickly. Thankfully, I didn’t have to rush too much, since Jessica Pineda, bilingual Medical Assistant, was rooming the patient and able to communicate easily with him.
Having a staff interpreter available in person really facilitates communication in stressful situations for the patients and the staff.
We learned that this family had just moved here seven months ago from Peru. Many times, families have not become familiar with our country’s healthcare system just yet. As language access specialists, we are knowledgeable about Mosaic’s resources and can make suggestions since the patient may not know everything that we can help them with.
For instance, during the visit it became apparent that the family had no way of getting to the imaging center for necessary X-rays before they closed. I suggested we try to use our transportation resources even though they weren’t established Mosaic patients. Stetson Hutchinson, Patient Services Representative, helped coordinate a ride for the family, providing excellent customer service like Mosaic staff always do.
Personally, I enjoyed interpreting for this child. He asked Holly Milligan, PNP questions about the treatment options we were discussing with his mom. He also asked us to explain certain words he wasn’t familiar with, such as what is an X-ray? He was very relieved when he found out it was only a photo of his foot. More relaxed at the end of his appointment, he also asked Holly if he could use her stethoscope to listen to his own heartbeat. He shared that he wanted to be a doctor, an archeologist, and a paleontologist when he grows up!
Appointments like this remind me what an impact an in-person interpreter can have on the outcome of a visit, and how nice it is to be present in that moment.