Did you know that you can access interpretation or translation services though the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)? As a NDIS participant, you allocate your benefits to receive interpreter services. You can have an interpreter present with you to help facilitate conversations with doctor appointments, for example as well as getting help if you need to go to court. It’s important that you understand what a medical professional say to you and of course, you need to thoroughly understand what is said in a court of law. These are examples of occasions when it may be necessary for you to have an interpreter.
You can usually choose between having a onsite face to face interpreter or video or telephone interpreter. Which you choose depends on the circumstances in which you need an interpreter.
The advantages of face-to-face-interpreters
If it is at all possible to arrange, the best choice of interpretation services is when the interpreter is present in the room with a client. An interpreter is able to read body language and facial expressions which are essential to better understand communication. Also, having an interpreter in the room with you should help you feel more relaxed and secure in what might seem to be a rather uncomfortable situation.
If the doctor, for example, is in the same room as the interpreter and you, the client, there is less chance of misunderstandings occurring. However, it is not always possible to have an interpreter in the room with you for various reasons.
Why sometimes you need video or telephone interpretation
If you live in a remote area, or you are rushed to the emergency room at a hospital, an interpreter may not be available. In these circumstances, it’s better to have a remote video interpreter, or one on the other end of a telephone, than no interpreter at all.
A video interpreter, although not physically present in the room with you, can still read the body language and facial expressions of the other person. He or she can also pick up on the tone of voice being used.
One problem associated with video interpretation is that the equipment can be faulty and the image may be distorted, making the interpreter’s job more difficult than it would be in a face-to-face situation. Also, if the professional (i.e. a doctor) is not actually wholly on camera, the interpreter is unable to read all the body language and facial expressions.
With interpretation by telephone, the interpreter has to rely on tone of voice to understand the message behind the spoken words. There’s no visual feedback and gestures, body language and facial expressions can only be guessed at. These “educated guesses” might be totally, or partially, wrong.
Affordability is another factor when choosing which service is more appropriate for you. It’s cheaper to have a video or telephone interpretation service because than the interpreter doesn’t have to travel what may be a long distance. This saves both time and money. It’s easier for an interpreter to assist you over the phone or via a video conference.
Possibly the main reason for having a telephone interpretation is speed. If you are in an emergency situation it’s quicker to call for an interpreter than to set up a remote video conference. Your call can be answered quickly and an interpreter can be connected to you for you very quickly.
If the patient (you) has already been in telephone contact with the service provider, then you might feel comfortable talking over the phone, especially if this is easy.
In some instances, it might be better not to have the interpreter present in the room with you. You might feel embarrassed discussing your medical condition with an interpreter present, for example. Religious and cultural differences can play a big part in a decision to regarding which type of interpretation service to use. As professionals, interpreter respect and understand these differences and would usually not try to influence the client regarding which service to use.
Telephone interpretation is especially useful when conversations are conducted primarily over the phone. For example, if the client needs to ring a doctor’s offices to arrange an appointment then it’s quick and easy to have a telephone interpretation.
Reasons for having a professional interpretation service
A professional interpreter is bound by a strict confidentiality code. Your friends, neighbours and relatives will not be informed of what transpired between you and your doctor, lawyer and so on.
Your interpreter will understand the cultural differences and treat you in a way that respects these. He or she will also communicate with you in a way that is culturally appropriate for you.
Translationz provides interpreter services and we are registered NDIS providers. Our interpreters are trained and culturally sensitive and experienced in working with NDIS participants. You will be treated with respect and sensitivity.
To schedule an interpreter with Translationz click on Get a Quote or call us at 03 9030 5234.
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