Healthcare Interpreters, Protect Yourselves!

Healthcare interpreting can be hazardous, especially for interpreters who work onsite at hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Interpreters need to be aware of potential health and safety hazards and take the appropriate measures to minimize or eliminate the risks.

Keep your hands clean.

Healthcare facilities have signs all over the place reminding and instructing people to cleanse their hands. Hand sanitizer stations are posted every three feet. (Okay, slight exaggeration, but you get the idea.) The CDC has even produced a fun, self-guided, interactive tutorial on the subject. Take a look and share it with others.

 Use appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

Use it in the appropriate way, at the appropriate time. It’s about protecting yourself.  General rule of thumb - if the medical personnel wear it, you wear it. It’s about preventing the spread of illness to others. The little ones in the NICU have enough to battle without adding preventable infections to their list of troubles. A quick search of the CDC website will provide you with more specifics on using PPE in the healthcare environment, including this handy poster on donning and removing PPE. 

Continue to learn more on how to protect yourself from medical environmental hazards, and put these tips into action because – let’s face it – the medical staff is plenty busy with the patients they already have, and interpreters are scarce enough without lessening availability due to illness. 

What else are you doing to take precautions in the medical environment?

Related Posts: