Baton Rouge businesses invest in language tools 

     Dana Vidrine, director of the mother and baby unit at Woman’s Hospital, remembers back when one of her patients mistakenly wrote a $200 check to pay for a circumcision—for her newborn daughter.

    At the root of the mixup was a language barrier: The Spanish-speaking patient, who had limited English proficiency, and the hospital’s English-speaking front desk staff, who collected the payment and did not understand Spanish, were unable to communicate effectively, causing the patient to purchase a service she didn’t need. Eventually, Woman’s refunded the patient.

    Vidrine remedied the situation using Language Line Solutions—a service the hospital has been using for some 15 years, offering written, signed, video, phone and on-site language interpretation services for non-English-speaking patients and their families. It’s a need that Vidrine says has grown dramatically in Baton Rouge, especially in the past year.

    Since more recently rolling out Interpreter on Wheels—a portable system that includes an iPad and speakers for video calling—Woman’s has seen marked success, with hospital workers saying it has built trust between patient and medical provider amid a rising demand for the service.

    The hospital’s Language Line marks one example of how more Baton Rouge businesses are trying to accommodate their increasingly foreign language-speaking clients—particularly those speaking Spanish—as the demographics of the city are evolving. Read the full story from Business Report.  


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