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Speeding up interpreter requests by 60% so more patients receive better care


For non-English speaking patients, reliable access to medical interpreters is essential to providing good patient care. It’s also associated with shorter lengths of stay and lower readmission rates, according to a study in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego serves an area where 37.5% of households speak a language other than English, which means medical interpreters are in high demand. To help serve more patients, Rady moved away from a third-party interpreter dispatch system and started managing interpreter requests in Epic. They created a workflow in which a user opens a patient’s chart in Epic to see her preferred language, requests an interpreter if needed, and tracks the status of the request in real time.

The average turnaround time for interpreter requests decreased by about 60%, and in addition interpreters can help more patients each day.

Epic community members can find Rady Children’s presentation slides and audio on the UserWeb.