Family members' experiences of the use of interpreters in healthcare
2013 (English)In: Primary Health Care Research and Development, ISSN 1463-4236, E-ISSN 1477-1128, Vol. 15, no 2, 156-169 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The aim was to explore adults’ experiences of their family members’ use of interpreters in health-care encounters.
Language barriers are a major hindrance for migrants to receive appropriate healthcare. In a foreign country, family members often need support in care of migrant patients. No previous studies focusing on adult family members’ experiences of the use of interpreters in healthcare have been found.
A purposive sample of 10 adult family members with experiences of the use of interpreters in health-care encounters. Data were collected between May and September 2009 by focus-group interviews and analysed with qualitative analysis according to a method described for focus groups.
Three categories emerged from the analysis: (1) Experiences of the use of professional interpreters, (2) Experiences of being used as an interpreter and (3) Experiences of what needs to be improved when using interpreters. The main findings showed no agreement in family members’ experiences; interpretation should be individually and situationally adapted. However, when family members acted as interpreters, their role was to give both practical and emotional support, and this led to both positive and negative emotions. Use of simple language, better collaboration in the health-care organization and developing the interpreters’ professional attitude could improve the use of professional interpreters. The type of interpreter, mode of interpretation and patient's preferences should be considered in the interpretation situation. In order to achieve high-quality healthcare, health-care professionals need to organize a good interpretation situation case-by-case, choose the appropriate interpreters with the patient in focus and cooperate with members of the patient's social network.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Cambridge University Press, 2013. Vol. 15, no 2, 156-169 p.
communication barriers; family members; focus-group interview; healthcare; professional interpreters; qualitative analysis
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-99845DOI: 10.1017/S1463423612000680PubMedID: 23402584OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-99845DiVA: diva2:658382