24 Mar The importance of medical translation around the world
As the world shrinks thanks to developments in technology and greater availability of low cost travel options, the world is as small as it has ever been. Within the healthcare and medical industry, this shrinking has created a number of opportunities for people to now receive medical care and treatment in other countries.
Medical translation in the modern world
Along with the benefits of medical tourism come a variety of challenges, in particular the language barrier. Most of the medical translations performed are for new medicines, clinical trials, general medical information, and medical devices. Medical document translation is necessary in order for medical professionals to provide the necessary care and treatment to patients who speak another language. It is important for healthcare professionals to be able to communicate effectively and efficiently with their patients no matter what language they speak. Another area where medical translation is important is in reviewing medical histories in order for the patient to receiving an accurate and safe medical service. Having access to a competent translator to help explain or translate medical histories, the patient’s discomfort or test result charts is extremely important. During the medical treatment process, a patient will also be subject to signing a number of documents. It is important that these documents are professionally translated or a professional medical translator is made available so that the patient knows what they are actually signing and putting their name to as it may cause some unforeseen costs.
Several European Union laws concerning medicines as well as different types of medical devices and diagnostic tests explicitly specify what information needs to be made available to users. Within the European Union, it is required by law to translate this information into the official languages of the countries where the product is going to be sold. If this translation does not take place, the medicine or medical device cannot be legally sold in that country, making a professional medical translation the only option.
Such life-threatening mistakes can be avoided with the use of professional medical document translators who are fluent in the medical terminology and in the source and target languages.