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Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care (HPHC), one of the largest HMOs in New England, wanted to increase the quality of health care provided to its increasing Limited-English Proficient members receiving care through a network of 22,000 doctors. A medical interpreter training program was developed and offered to bilingual staff of the provider network. In 2000, this program trained 40 interpreters in three languages. Since then it has grown to training over 200 medical interpreters annually in over ten languages. This program has since been incorporated within the HPHC Foundation and is now offered to health care organizations outside of the HPHC network. Participants who successfully complete this training program now effectively and consistently serve providers and help ensure accuracy in provider-patient communication which is essential in reducing provider errors, reducing health care costs and ensuring patient compliance and satisfaction.

The objective of Institute for Linguistic and Cultural Skills (ILCS) of the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation is to eliminate health disparities by building the linguistic and cultural capacity of community health care organizations serving culturally and linguistically diverse populations. ILCS does this by offering consulting services, training programs, and assisting with initiatives that are unique to the communities served.




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