#1 Safety Rule:
Always speak to your (prospective) patients in their native language
… and hire a professional to get your message across.
Checklist for hiring a professional to avoid costly and potentially life-threatening mistakes:
1. Getting started
Plan ahead: Start looking for translation talent now. And once you begin producing texts for translation, give your translators as much lead time as possible. Take control of the controllable: consider producing an in-house glossary or hire a professional medical translator to do so. (This is an excellent way to make both your original documents and the translation output more consistent.)
2. Hire a professional translator specializing in your field
Why is a medical translator so imperative for a medical text? Two words: specialized terminology. That is, each technical term has a precise meaning. If the translator fails to convey the precision of the term, the translation fails in its purpose. That’s why we are continuously striving to stay on top of technological advances in your fields of business. Ongoing training and in-depth industry knowledge are indispensable building blocks for top-notch specialist translations.
3. Don’t be fooled into thinking any bilingual could do the job
Professional translators are writers, producing texts that read well in the target language. They are usually fluent in their source language(s) as well. But they are above all effective bridges between the languages they work in; they can render the message of the original text, with appropriate style and terminology, in their native language.
Bilingualism is something else. Bilinguals speak two languages fluently, but are not necessarily good at moving information between the two, especially in writing. And many people described as bilinguals overestimate their communication skills altogether. Bilingualism on its own is not a guarantee of written fluency or skill in translation.
4. Beware of machine translation or low budget providers
Today, it seems that all it takes is a few clicks to speak a different language. But don’t be fooled by money-saving machine translation and low budget providers who may do more harm than good. ATA-certified and sworn translators are serious about their profession and subscribe to a professional code of ethics. That way, you can take the guesswork out of your translations and trust that you receive quality work. Another added value: Sworn translators are authorized to provide certified / notarized translations recognized by courts and authorities.
Are you looking for a qualified translator?
Let us bridge the language gap for you. We’ve been specializing in providing linguistic assistance to the medical and legal communities for decades. Here is how we can support you:
- Medical translations of cutting-edge quality – Getting your message across the world.
- Editing – Fine-tuning your text output to make your message sound authentic.
- Interpreting – Qualified help in live settings where hitting just the right word at the right time makes all the difference..
Susanne Henke, sworn medical and legal translator with 25 years of experience