Purpose: The aim of this project is to explore the substantial health disparities experienced by the Hispanic population in the United States; specifically, the relationship between translation services and patient outcomes. The hispanic population is growing exponentially, and this serves as a call to action to address the adverse health outcomes due to inadequate translation services.
Methods: A literature review was conducted using the databases Project Muse, PubMed, BMC Health Services Research, NCBI, Communication and Medicine, and ProQuest to gather relevant literature from the years of 2007-2022. In the initial round, I eliminated articles based on Limited English Proficient (LEP), health disparities, Hispanic, translational services, and health care. Articles from 2007 to 2022 were used.
Results: The following themes were developed illustrating the current limitations of our approach to translation services: attitudes surrounding the use of translation services, education regarding how to utilize translation services, comfort levels of clinicians with these translational services as well as technical difficulties or availability of these services. These findings provide insight into the efficacy of translation services as a risk factor for or protective factor against diminished access to health care and adverse health outcomes disproportionately impacting this population.
Conclusion: Strict regulations of the translational services in the population coupled with education in the use of these services and the Spanish language has the potential to substantially improve the quality of care for this population. This is a call to action for the execution of new practices, education, accountability, advocacy, and literature to inform the development and successful implementation of standardized protocols for translation services nationwide.
Key words: translational services, Hispanic LEP population, health disparities