Language Line Services Forms Independent Global Advisory Council to Enhance the Availability of Trained, Tested and Certified Medical Interpreters

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at
Thu May 29 15:52:56 UTC 2008

Language Line Services Forms Independent Global Advisory Council to
Enhance the Availability of Trained, Tested and Certified Medical

Health Care and Interpreter Industry Experts to Help Guide the Quality
Standards and Expand the Reach of Company's Medical Certification

MONTEREY, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--As part of its ongoing commitment
to improve the quality of medical care provided to limited-English
speaking patients, leading interpretation services provider Language
Line Services has gathered health care and medical interpreting
experts, patient advocates and other language service providers to
form an independent Global Advisory Council (GAC) that will help guide
the company's interpreter certification programs and medical
interpreting-related policy initiatives. The GAC will work
collaboratively with Language Line(R) University, the company's
globally recognized interpreter training and certification subsidiary,
to develop and expand the availability of educational and "best
practice" guidelines that simplify and standardize training and
testing for interpreters working in the medical field.

"Language Line University has formed the Global Advisory Council as a
means to improve both the access and delivery of quality health care
to limited English proficient patients," said Louis Provenzano,
President and COO of Language Line Services. "We are extremely pleased
to have gathered such an impressive group of industry thought leaders
who share Language Line University's desire to accelerate solutions
that will eliminate costly, and often life-threatening, language
barriers in the health care setting."

The nine inaugural members of the Global Advisory Council include:

Louise Behiel, Assistant Manager, Interpretation & Translation
Services, Calgary Health Region, Canada
Janet Bonet, Director, National Association for Translators and
Interpreters (NATI), Omaha, NE
Kathleen K. Diamond, President and CEO, LLE Language Services, Washington, DC
Winnie Heh, VP Global Operations, Language Line Services, Monterey, CA
David Jones, Interpretation & Volunteer Services, Mercy Medical
Center, Des Moines, IA
Linda Joyce, Consultant and Language Access Specialist, Walton, WV
Deborah Saldaña, Director of Interpreter Development & Training,
Phoenix Language Services, Inc, Philadelphia, PA
Diane de Terra, PhD, Research Professor of Language Practice,
University of Maryland's National Foreign Language Center , College
Park, MD
John Weiner, VP of Products & Services, PSI Psychological Services, Burbank, CA
In addition to the council members listed above, there will be two
international representatives appointed to the council. There is also
an open call for applications currently underway for two remaining
seats available for any interpreter or industry stakeholder that
wishes to apply. In the interest of impartiality and maintaining an
inclusive process, applicants will be reviewed and elected to the open
council seats by the existing GAC members.

"As an industry we have a responsibility to provide quality language
interpretation services to patients with limited English proficiency,
and as the population becomes more linguistically diverse, this
responsibility becomes more apparent, and more urgent," said GAC
member Linda Joyce. "While most hospitals are conforming to legal
regulations regarding language access, many are doing so only with a
patchwork infrastructure of interpreters that have not been tested for
their understanding of key medical terms and cultural nuances, skills
that are essential to ensuring accurate diagnosis and treatment."

"The fact is, many of our nation's hospitals' language access programs
are on life support – they are receiving a great deal of attention,
but their condition is not improving," added Provenzano. "It has never
been more important to focus on creating clear standards for formal
language access programs, so that everyone who walks in the doors of a
hospital will be understood and receive the care they need. I am
hopeful that with the input of the Global Advisory Council, Language
Line University can put the industry on a path towards fulfilling this
need for all patients, regardless of language."

About Language Line Services

Language Line Services, the leading provider of telephone interpreting
and other language-based services, is a trusted partner to thousands
of organizations whose focus is to effectively serve the rapidly
expanding market of limited English speakers. The company delivers a
dynamic suite of solutions spanning phone and video interpretation,
translation, transcription, localization and localized software and
devices and the only medical interpreter certification program that is
externally validated. Through its leading-edge technology
infrastructure, Language Line Services provides support for more than
170 spoken languages and American Sign Language to its
industry-leading portfolio of clients across markets including health
care, financial services, government, telecom, manufacturing,
insurance, entertainment, travel, and more. For information on how
Language Line Services is helping clients achieve their strategic
multi-cultural marketing and regulatory compliance objectives, please
call 1-800-752-6096 or visit

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