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Applying Standards of Practice to Situations

Category of StandardSituation
ACCURACY e.g., an interpreter repeats all that is said, even if it seems redundant, irrelevant, or rude.
ACCURACY e.g., unless there is no equivalent in the patient's language, an interpreter does not substitute simpler explanations for medical terms a provider uses, but may ask the speaker to re-word them.
ACCURACY e.g., an interpreter may explain the interpreting process to a provider by saying "everything you say will be repeated to the patient."
ACCURACY e.g., an interpreter may ask a speaker to pause or slow down.
ACCURACY e.g., an interpreter who has omitted an important word corrects the mistake as soon as possible.
ACCURACY e.g., when asking for clarification, an interpreter says to all parties, "I, the interpreter, did not understand, so I am going to ask for an explanation."
CONFIDENTIALITY e.g., an interpreter does not discuss a patient’s case with family or community members without the patient’s consent.
CONFIDENTIALITY e.g., an interpreter does not leave notes on an interpreting session in public view.
IMPARTIALITY e.g., an interpreter does not reveal personal feelings through words, tone of voice, or body language.
IMPARTIALITY e.g., an interpreter avoids interpreting for a family member or close friend.
RESPECT e.g., in greetings, an interpreter uses appropriate titles for both patient and provider.
RESPECT e.g., an interpreter may tell the patient and provider to address each other, rather than the interpreter.
RESPECT e.g., an interpreter directs a patient who asks him or her for a ride home to appropriate resources within the institution.
CULTURAL AWARENESS e.g., an interpreter learns about the traditional remedies some patients may use
CULTURAL AWARENESS e.g., if a provider asks a patient who is fasting for religious reasons to take an oral medication, an interpreter may call attention to the potential conflict.
ROLE BOUNDARIES e.g., an interpreter does not share or elicit overly personal information in conversations with a patient.
ROLE BOUNDARIES e.g., an interpreter never advises a patient on health care questions, but redirects the patient to ask the provider.
ROLE BOUNDARIES e.g., an interpreter who is also a nurse does not confer with another provider in the patient's presence, without reporting what is said.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter accurately represents his or her credentials.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter asks about the nature of the assignment and reviews relevant terminology.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter who is unfamiliar with a highly technical medical term asks for an explanation before continuing to interpret.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., when asked to sight translate a surgery consent form, an interpreter instead asks the provider to explain its content and then interprets the explanation.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter does not blame others for his or her interpreting errors.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter on a lengthy assignment indicates when fatigue might compromise interpreting accuracy.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter does not spread rumors that would discredit another interpreter.
PROFESSIONALISM e.g., an interpreter dresses appropriately and arrives on time for appointments.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT e.g., an interpreter stays up to date on changes in medical terminology or regional slang.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT e.g., an interpreter consults with colleagues about a challenging assignment.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT e.g., an experienced interpreter mentors novice interpreters.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT e.g., an interpreter attends professional workshops and conferences.
ADVOCACY e.g., an interpreter may intervene on behalf of a patient with a life-threatening allergy, if the condition has been overlooked.
ADVOCACY e.g., an interpreter may alert his or her supervisor to patterns of disrespect towards patients.
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