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Assessing Doctors' Language Skills

posted 21 Jul 2010, 11:12 by Cora Bastiaansen   [ updated 18 Aug 2010, 02:21 ]

July 21, 2010

How can hospitals make sure doctors from foreign countries have necessary language skills?

Beyond interpretation and foreign language skills, there is another language-related issue of crucial importance in medical settings: making sure that doctors and staff possess the necessary language skills to practice in a country's primary language.

This situation can become problematic in the European Union, where the right to work in other member states has meant mobility in many fields, including the medical profession. In the UK, for example, 30% of the doctors are trained outside of the country. While speaking English is ostensibly a condition for working there, some doctors do not possess the full set of linguistic and cultural skills necessary to practice effectively and safely.