SignTranslate GP and SignTranslate Hospital are award-winning websites that allow medical staff to communicate with Deaf sign-language-users. This ensures medical staff can treat Deaf patients without delay, even if face-to-face interpreting support is not available.
On-Line Sign Language Interpreting
Some situations require the flexibility of a face-to-face British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter, but there are often long lead times to obtain their services. When such a situation arises at short notice, medical staff and the Deaf patient can use SignTranslate's On-Line Sign Language Interpreting Service to make a video call to a fully qualified BSL interpreter using a standard webcam. No specialist equipment is needed and an interpreter can be available in minutes.
SignTranslate's platform allows distribution of On-Line Sign Language Interpreting sessions to a bank of interpreting agencies all over the UK. This means that local interpreters will normally be on-line, which is reassuring for the Deaf person.
In an emergency any available on-line interpreter can deal with the call, ensuring that the patient's needs can be cared for quickly by medical staff.
Click here for more information about on-demand, inexpensive, pay-as-you-go On-Line Sign Language Interpreting.
Demonstrable Benefits for Deaf BSL users
When face-to-face interpreters are not available SignTranslate ensures that Deaf people can make themselves understood and properly understand the information they are receiving so medical staff can make fast accurate diagnoses.
SignTranslate significantly improves access to healthcare services, and helps the NHS to meet some of its important Equality Act 2010 obligations. SignTranslate is not a replacement for face-to-face interpreters, rather it is a vital addition to the range of Interpreting and Translation services that modern healthcare organisations must offer.
Frequently Asked Questions
A couple of points that can confuse people until they are clarified:
- Why does a Deaf BSL user need an On-Line Sign Language Interpreter? Why not communicate with a Deaf patient by exchanging written notes?
Because sign language users are not necessarily confident with written English. The average BSL user has an equivalent reading age of a 7 year old.
- Don't Deaf people read lips?
Not all Deaf people are able to read lips. Lip-reading is a skill that can take years to learn, and even the best lip-readers can only understand about 30% of what has been said. They cleverly guess the rest, but this can lead to real misunderstanding and this could be serious in a medical situation.