Pharmacy Times: News Briefs - May, 2003
Because of translation difficulties, approximately 1 in 10 children are given incorrect prescription medication as a result of parents not understanding the instructions before dispensing the medicines. In a survey of 592 individuals (including a large number of whom were native Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, or Russian speakers) in US Communities who speak English as a second language, 33% of the respondents said that they have left their physician's office without being clear about their medication because of a language translation barrier.
TransPerfect Translations conducted the survey to determine whether people who speak little or no English had problems with medication instructions. It found that respondents seemed hesitant to make sure they understood their prescriptions, and 28% guessed at the proper dosage because they did not know what the prescription said.
Furthermore, 17% performed an activity they should have avoided while on the medication because they did not fully grasp the facts about the medication.
The effects on the Spanish speaking community were more prevalent, compared with the other groups. More than 50% of the Spanish speaking participants reported having difficulty understanding [translating] the proper use of a prescription drug.
With revenue of over $250 million, TransPerfect is the largest privately held language services provider in the world. From offices in 66 cities on 5 continents, TransPerfect offers a full range of services in over 100 languages to multinationals worldwide. With a global network of over 4,000 linguists and subject-area specialists, TransPerfect is the largest translation company to be fully ISO 9001:2008 and EN 15038:2006 certified. TransPerfect is headquartered in New York and has regional headquarters in London and Hong Kong. For more information, please visit our website at www.transperfect.com.