Healthcare accessibility is a challenge facing millions, and an issue ULG is dedicated to working to improve. At this year’s “Paving the Way to Healthcare Access” conference sponsored by UMass Memorial, we had the opportunity to dive further into the complexities of healthcare access and the pathways to resolution.
Key Takeaway: Interpretation services are critical in reducing readmission rates within the Limited English Proficiency (LEP) population.
During the conference, UMass shared the results of a pilot program they executed to address LEP readmission rates. The program provided access to an interpreter for every patient that they admitted. Upon conclusion, the program saw decreased readmission rates within the LEP population.
The program demonstrated that ensuring consistent access to interpretation services not only influences the patient experience, but also helps hospital networks meet their strategic objectives by lowering the costs associated with readmissions.
Trend Outlook: The demand for telephonic (OPI) and video remote (VRI) interpretation is expanding within hospital networks.
The impact that these services have on provider efficiency, speed of access to care, and cost savings relative to onsite interpretation is proving indispensable. As hospitals realize that bilingual staff don’t fill the need for a medically trained linguist, language partners can provide the fast and accurate interpretations that increase patient outcomes.
OPI and VRI programs will also continue to grow within healthcare settings due to the fact that their 24/7 access mitigates concerns surrounding interpreter availability and they can connect with patients and clinicians at any time necessary.
Proper healthcare access is a basic human right that ULG is dedicated to serving. Attending conferences like “Paving the Way to Healthcare Access” helps us grow our understanding of the current issues so we can get one step closer to the world we envision– one where language barriers no longer exist.