Recently we have received several questions surrounding the need for Interpreting Services when the patient does not speak English. Who is responsible to provide the Interpreter? Is the practice responsible to pay for the Interpreter? What if a family member is willing to translate?
Should a patient require an interpreter, the practice is required to provide, and pay for interpreting services. Patients who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing are covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act and interpreting services must be provided.
If a patient agrees to communicate through family members, writing, or other means, then an interpreter may not be necessary. It is essential to verify that the patient agrees to use their representative for interpreting services. Should the patient representative not wish to provide interpreting services, the practice is responsible to acquire and pay for interpreting services.
It is recommended to have a list of Companies in your area that can accommodate your practice interpreting needs.