Gary Jenkins is a 71-year-old African American man who has always been able to manage his own affairs, despite being blind since birth. However, when he developed prostate cancer, he realized that he was at a major disadvantage.
Effective communication is essential to the healthcare interactions at all levels. When patients have limited-English proficiency (LEP), or speak different languages, it is nearly impossible for clear communication to take place. Interpreters provide an essential bridge to effective communication with LEP patients, however, simply having a qualified interpreter in the room (or on the phone) will not automatically guarantee success. Make the most of interpreter-mediated patient interactions with our five tips for working with interpreters.
Health literacy describes one's ability to obtain and understand the medical information needed to make informed healthcare decisions. This includes the ability to understand medical explanations of symptoms and illnesses; follow directions for medications, tests, and procedures; and ask relevant questions.