Federal regulations for translation and interpreting in medical settings

Below please find the new federal regulations for interpreting and translation services in health programs administered by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Through agencies such as the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), HHS provides federal financial to health programs and activities of local governments, state governments, and the private sector. An entity may receive federal financial assistance from more than one component in the department. For instance, federally qualified health centers receive federal financial assistance from CMS by participating in the Medicare or Medicaid programs and also receive federal financial assistance from HRSA through grant awards.

US HHS rule on Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). On September 8, 2015 US HHS posted the proposed rule online and opened it for public comments. The comment period closed on November 9, 2015. On May 13, 2016, the HHS Office for Civil Rights issued the final rule implementing of Section 1557. There were 2,166 comments received by US HHS. Comments can be found at this link.

The following language organizations submitted their comments:
• National Association for the Deaf (NAD) 11/17/2015 HHS-OCR-2015-0006-1824
• National Language Access Advocates Network (N-LAAN) 11/17/2015 HHS-OCR-2015-0006-1834
• National Council on Interpreting in Health Care (NCIHC) 11/13/2015 HHS-OCR-2015-0006-1008
• Washington State Coalition for Language Access (WSCLA) 11/17/2015 HHS-OCR-2015-0006-1561
• Language World Services, Inc. 10/30/2015 HHS-OCR-2015-0006-0254

Full text of the rule:
https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2016/05/18/2016-11458/nondiscrimination-in-health-programs-and-activities#sec-92-201%20

Code of Federal Regulations TITLE 45 PUBLIC WELFARE
Nondiscrimination in Health Programs and Activities
A Rule by the US Health and Human Services Department (HHS) published on May 18, 2016

Highlights of the rule applicable to language access in translation and interpreting for healthcare:

This final rule clarifies and codifies existing nondiscrimination requirements and sets forth new standards to implement Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in health programs administered by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS or the Department) and entities established under Title I of the ACA.

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How can I become a licensed translator or interpreter in Oregon?

Recently, one of our readers asked this question and we thought others might benefit from this answer.

In Oregon, the steps to obtaining health care interpreting certification are listed here while information on becoming a certified court interpreter is available here.

OSTI strives to announce all trainings available for interpreting and translation at the OSTI calendar page. It’s also worth pointing out that many courses offered by the Oregon Court interpreting program are beneficial not only to court interpreters, but to those wishing to improve their medical interpreting skills as well.

There is no translation license in the United States. The American Translators Association has a certification process of its own for translators interested in strengthening their resume in this way. OSTI has a study group that is preparing for the ATA certification exam, and we have put together a wealth of information on how to get ready for it here.

There is more information on translation and interpreting certifications on the OSTI website.

ASTM Standards Ensure Translation and Interpreting Quality

On May 19, 2016, Helen Eby, OSTI President, gave a presentation to stakeholders who are representative of the voters of an ASTM ballot. They included representatives from medical interpreting services clients and language services companies, and individual interpreting and translation services providers.

Translation was a relevant topic to interpreters present at the meeting, since compensation surveys show that at least 66% of interpreters also do translation work. Therefore, it behooves interpreters to be aware of translation standards and have some training in the practice.

Attendees had an opportunity to look at complete copies of the Standard – passed around in the room – to corroborate the information and ask questions. Some questions and answers that came up in the discussion were:

Can we have a link to the Standards?
OSTI’s Web page has published an article about the Standards that includes a link for purchasing the full version. See below for the link.

What are some of the issues that come up in translation?
One challenge is that some clients request that Spanish documents be published following English capitalization and punctuation rules.

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Save the Date!

Save the Date!

bend

OSTI THIRD ANNUAL CONFERENCE
September 23 – 25, 2016

Central Oregon Community College
Bend, Oregon 97701

OSTI Spring Social in Portland April 20, 2016

Spring is in the air!

To celebrate spring and our amazing members, OSTI is happy to invite you to join us for a lovely evening to meet and socialize with fellow members who are aspiring and experienced translators and interpreters.

It will be a great opportunity to meet other members in a non-work environment and to share our experiences.

Place, time and cost:
Wednesday, April 20th, 2016, 6:30 p.m – 8:30 p.m.
India Grill
2924 E. Burnside St.
Portland, OR 97214
No host dinner: Click on this link to see the menu and prices of the India Grill.

We hope to see you there!!!

If you have any questions, please contact our VP, Jazmin Manjarrez, by phone (503) 330-3126(503) 330-3126 or by email classymexi55@gmail.com

ATA study program – week 1

**This post was originally published on Mar 21, 2016. OSTI is not currently hosting study groups.

By Sarah Symons Glegorio
Translator | Spanish, Portuguese → English

Introduction
The first live online session of the OSTI ATA certificate study group kicked off with a round of introductions by all the attendees. In addition to the Spanish-English participants, we also welcomed a couple of French-English participants and it seems as though the group may be growing throughout our 25 weeks together. Helen Eby, the OSTI president and study group organizer and moderator, explained that “As an association, we thought we should help colleagues cross the certificate finish line.” Last year study meetings were attempted but they weren’t structured enough so she developed this syllabus to provide just that. Disclaimer: This course is an experiment and is not a guarantee to pass the ATA certification test!

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Workers Compensation Rules Review

Recently, OSTI President Helen Eby met with the Workers Compensation Rules Committee and submitted an Interpreter Rules Clean proposal because the Compensation rules lack minimum requirements for interpreters. Under the current rules, any neighbor or friend can interpret.
2015 11 23 Workers Compensation Interpreting Rules Clean

During the meeting on November 23, she recommended that interpreters be certified or qualified by the standards of the Oregon Health Authority or the Oregon Courts.

In addition to the input regarding qualifications, she recommended making payment practices more flexible because of complaints that not all interpreting appointments scheduled under Workers Compensation were actually being paid. Since interpreters are not responsible for determining whether an appointment qualifies for Workers Compensation or not, she felt changes needed to be made.
She also proposed that a clarification be made as to when the quarter hours start, and make it easier for interpreters to understand and be compatible with other areas in which they practice.
During the discussion, the issue of interpreters not being able to answer questions about their appointments came up. Some of the stakeholders were not aware that professional interpreters follow a code of ethics. Helen Eby, OSTI President, submitted a comparison of the codes of ethics followed by professional interpreters in Oregon.
Interpreting Codes of Ethics that Apply in Oregon

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ASTM: A framework for teamwork and quality in interpreting and translation

Thursday, May 19, 2016, 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 pm.
Brown bag lunch.
Free presentation.
Space is limited. Click here to register
Location: Oregon Health Authority Transformation Center Conference Room, 421 SW Oak St., Suite 775, Portland, OR 97204.
This presentation is made possible thanks to the Oregon Health Authority generously providing the space.

Helen Eby, OSTI President, has been the Technical Contact for the Translation standard. She will explain how ASTM interpreting and translation standards can provide practical guidance and help set up projects to ensure effective budget use. Another member of the ASTM Translation team, a Portland based language services company owner, may participate in the presentation. This reflects the ASTM way, in which all stakeholders participate.

All stakeholders are welcome, in an effort to invite dialog about the needs of clients and other stakeholders as standards continue to be developed, and in an effort to help all stakeholders work effectively with interpreters and translators.

OSTI thanks the Oregon Health Authority for its generosity in allowing OSTI to use the Transformation Center for this event. Practical worksheets that the Interpreting Standard drafting team enthusiastically supported will be shared and made available.

This is a brown bag lunch event.

After the presentation, the worksheets and the PowerPoint will be made available as links to this blog post.

Space is limited. Click here to register.