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Boundaries and conditions of interpretation in multilingual and multicultural elderly healthcare
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Division of Health, Activity and Care. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. Linnaeus University, Sweden.
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Division of Health, Activity and Care. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies, Division of Health, Activity and Care. Linköping University, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.
2015 (English)In: BMC Health Services Research, ISSN 1472-6963, E-ISSN 1472-6963, Vol. 15, no 458Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Elderly migrants who do not speak the official language of their host country have increased due to extensive international migration, and will further increase in the future. This entails major challenges to ensure good communication and avoid communication barriers that can be overcome by the use of adequate interpreter services. To our knowledge, there are no previous investigations on interpreting practices in multilingual elderly healthcare from different healthcare professionals perspectives. This study examines issues concerning communication and healthcare through a particular focus on interpretation between health professionals and patients of different ethnic and linguistic backgrounds. The central aim of the project is to explore interpretation practices in multilingual elderly healthcare. Methods: A purposive sample of 33 healthcare professionals with experience of using interpreters in community multilingual elderly healthcare. Data were collected between October 2013 and March 2014 by 18 individual and four focus group interviews and analysed with qualitative content analysis. Results: The main results showed that interpreting practice in multilingual elderly healthcare was closely linked to institutional, interpersonal and individual levels. On the organizational level, however, guidelines for arranging the use of interpreters at workplaces were lacking. Professional interpreters were used on predictable occasions planned long in advance, and bilingual healthcare staff and family members acting as interpreters were used at short notice in everyday caring situations on unpredictable occasions. The professional interpreter was perceived as a person who should interpret spoken language word-for-word and who should translate written information. Furthermore, the use of a professional interpreter was not adapted to the context of multilingual elderly healthcare. Conclusion: This study found that interpreter practice in multilingual elderly healthcare is embedded in the organizational environment and closely related to the individuals language skills, cultural beliefs and socio-economic factors. In order to formulate interpreter practice in the context of multilingual elderly healthcare it is important to consider organizational framework and cultural competence, cultural health knowledge, beliefs and customs.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
BIOMED CENTRAL LTD , 2015. Vol. 15, no 458
Keyword [en]
Ethnicity; Multilingual elderly healthcare; Interpretation; Interpretation practices; Organization
National Category
Sociology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-122194DOI: 10.1186/s12913-015-1124-5ISI: 000362254600001PubMedID: 26444009OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-122194DiVA, id: diva2:865056
Note

Funding Agencies|Vetenskapsradet (The Swedish Research Council), Sweden [521-2013-2533]

Available from: 2015-10-26 Created: 2015-10-23 Last updated: 2018-02-20
In thesis
1. Organizing Language Interpreting Services in Elderly and Emergency Healthcare
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Organizing Language Interpreting Services in Elderly and Emergency Healthcare
2018 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

With an increasing migrant population there is a growing need to organize interpreting practices in healthcare in order to deliver equitable high-quality care.

This thesis focuses on healthcare institutions’ organization of interpreting services. The aim of the study was to explore interpreting practices in a healthcare context by comparing two different healthcare areas – elderly and emergency healthcare. The study aimed to highlight the impact of the organizational and institutional context.

This study was designed as an explorative and descriptive qualitative study including 79 healthcare professionals with experience of interpreting practices recruited via purposeful sampling in elderly and emergency healthcare. Data were collected through individual and focus-group interviews and analysed with inductive qualitative content analysis.

The main findings show that the processes and structures around interpreting practices were complex and mainly linked to individual and interpersonal levels and, to a limited extent, to the institutional level. On the institutional level the Public Procurement Act was the only formal policy to follow. On individual and interpersonal level interpreting practices were structured by self-established informal workplace routines developed by the professional groups. The norms and routines used was determined by access to interpreters, time aspects, characteristics of the care given, health conditions and the person’s problem, expectations and requests from the person and also from healthcare professionals. There were wishes for improvement, with better flexibility in access to professional interpreters, training for users and interpreters, and also better technical solutions and equipment.

In conclusion, the use of interpreters was rooted in the organizational environment of interpreting practice, including the availability of laws, policy and guidelines, and closely related to individuals’ language skills, cultural values and social factors. The use of professional interpreters was based on the nature of care in context and access to interpreters and determined by health professionals’ estimation of the person’s current health status in order to deliver fast and individualized care based on humanistic values.

Thus, it is important to consider organizational framework and cultural awareness when formulating interpreting practices adapted to the context, and formal guidelines in order to achieve the aim of personcentered and equal health care.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2018. p. 70
Series
Linköping Studies in Health Sciences. Thesis, ISSN 1100-6013 ; 131
Keyword
Communication, Emergency healthcare, Elderly healthcare, Interpreting practices, Organizing, Qualitative methods, Transcultural nursing.
National Category
Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-145228 (URN)10.3384/lic.diva-145228 (DOI)9789176853665 (ISBN)
Presentation
2018-03-20, K3, Kåkenhus, Campus Norrköping, Norrköping, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-02-20 Created: 2018-02-20 Last updated: 2018-03-23Bibliographically approved

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