Regional West Medical Center breaking language barriers with new - Scottsbluff Area News, Sports, and Weather

Regional West Medical Center breaking language barriers with new computers

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More than 12 percent of people in Scotts Bluff County speak another language other than English and sometimes language barriers may pose a problem when offering healthcare to patients.

Staff members at Regional West Medical Center in Scottsbluff are providing four language translation computers that can assist with interpreting all languages including American Sign Language.

Language Access Coordinator J. Martin Vargis says it's ideal to have face-to-face interpretation but the computers will be used in emergency situations.

In less than 15 seconds, an interpreter will pop-up on a secure screen and assist in any situation.

"It helps with the continuum of care," said Vargis. "People feel more comfortable coming, keeping up with our follow-up appointments and that way they know they're going to receive care in their language."

The four computers will be placed throughout the main entries of the hospital including the Birth and Infant Care, Emergency Room and Physician Clinic.

Under the Affordable Care Act, more than 10 million new, limited English proficient patients are expected to have access to healthcare services.

Regional West is contracted with an Arizona based-company that has been endorsed by the American Hospital Association.

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