Table 2

Description of communication strategies used for exchanging information with LEP patients

Communication strategyRecommended* form of communicationDescription
In-person interpreterRecommendedProfessional interpreter, employed by the hospital providing in-person interpreter services
Telephone interpreterRecommendedProfessional interpreter delivering interpretive services via telephone
Self (Spanish- Concordant)RecommendedClinician speaking with the patient themselves (self) in Spanish when they are proficient in Spanish
Other staffNot recommendedUse of other staff members (eg, those proficient in Spanish) to communicate with the patient
Patient familyNot recommendedUsing family members accompanying the patient that have some English-speaking skills to communicate with the patient
Self (English)Not recommendedClinician speaking with the patient themselves (self) in English
Self (Spanish- partially concordant)Not recommendedClinician speaking with the patient themselves (self) in Spanish when they know some words/phrases in Spanish but are not proficient
No verbal comm.Not mentioned in standardsCommunicative encounters where no verbal information was exchanged
  • *Recommended by the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Healthcare.12

  • LEP,  limited English proficiency.