When a non-English speaking patient is admitted to South Georgia Medical Center, a nurse can use a card to find out what language the patient speaks, anything from Chinese Mandarin to Polish or even Portuguese or Russian.
And with the push of a button, this "interpreter in a box" system can dial up a translator.
Teresa Leff, a registered nurse, says, "You tell them what you need to ask the patient, and they'll ask the patient, and both people can hear it, making it easier to do the translation."
The interpreter in a box system was first unveiled in the maternity ward at South Georgia Medical Center. It has since been expanded to every floor in the hospital, meaning no matter where a patient may be treated, they can always get bedside help in their native language.
Ivelisse Sayre, a patient representative, says, "We just recently implemented it in the ER, in our hospital, and some of the doctors say it's a wonderful tool.
“I can speak with my patients; I feel more comfortable and can get a better diagnosis of the patient, all because they understand what the symptoms are."
All for a lower cost then employing dozens of local interpreters while still meeting current and future needs.
Right now, the main SGMC hospital is the only location in Valdosta to feature this technology, but hospital officials plan on expanding throughout the Azalea City in the coming months.
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