The field of medical translation is unique. All translations ought to be flawless, but few fields have more serious consequences than the medical. If the document is misinterpreted or lacks clarity, the patient’s wealth is going to be at risk. You can conduct a quick Google search and it will let you know how many times mistranslated medical documents resulted in serious injuries and deaths.
With that said, it always pays if you can look for a healthcare translation company with experience in providing quality-assured translations in the medical field. Because the best medical translation is not just a word-to-word translation of the document. Only a bilingual translator won’t cut it. You need subject matter expertise, with an understanding of the accurate terminology, target audience, and not to mention culture. Because these are some of the things that pose significant challenges when it comes to editing and translating medical documents.
The medical field is full of so many technical terms and acronyms. This makes it difficult for translators to provide accurate terminology translation services. Because even a minor change in wording could be fatal and can result in business repressions. That’s the reason when it comes to dealing with specific terms, big companies always rely on professional medical terminology translation services for accurate results.
For instance, if we use terminology like “mild dementia”, we can’t simply translate it to “light dementia”. If an injection is supposed to be injected in the muscle, then a literal Spanish translation will translate muscle as “muslo”. But in Spanish, when you say “muslo”, it only means thigh. So, you see the original meaning is lost somewhere. To avoid such issues, it’s advisable to always invest in expert medical terminology translation services. With such services, you will be working with professional translators who are well-versed in both the source and target language. Thus, they make sure that there is an accurate transfer of the message, without altering it.
There are even more issues with it. Many times medical terminologies are inclusive of such words which have no equivalent words in the target language. What a translator will do in this case is they will try to use the closest meaning words in the target language. Or they will just explain the concept. After all, the purpose is to transfer the message in a correct manner.
Therefore, healthcare translation services only employ translators who know most acronyms, abbreviations, and terminologies in their specific fields. Plus, they have complete command over both languages so they can carry out translations accurately. If a translator has no understanding of medical records, prescriptions, etc, how can they be trusted with quality translation in healthcare?
Are you aware of your target audience that will be reading your information? Because medical jargon is quite complex and not every reader will understand. If your audience comprises medical professionals then you may not always need to hire human-based healthcare translation services.
However, if you want the general public to understand your language, you need advanced-level expertise. Why? Since you have to produce a translation that uses plain language without missing or altering any meaning. This often demands that you work with a healthcare translation agency for true project success.
With the advancements in healthcare, specialized terminology is also growing. Every day, there are new ideas and concepts in the industry. Thus, if a translator is unaware of the advancements in the industry, they will be unable to understand new terms. Which is a problem. They then can’t convey the accurate meaning as well as nuances present within the information.
Sometimes, your target audience includes professionals who are knowledgeable about the latest research. When they have already read the latest journals, your translations should give them a base for further discoveries. In cases where you support staff to target, if your translations don’t include additional information about the new concepts, they will not understand the message. Therefore, it’s crucial that you have a proper understanding of who your target audience is. Otherwise, it will be hard to convey the right style, tone, and intended education level to the audience you intend to target.
Healthcare language translation services should be localized. It’s an approach that addresses all the key cultural elements. This includes but is not limited to medical dosages (grams vs. ounces), acronyms like PRN (as needed), BIS (twice), or BID (twice per day), and more.
For instance, there are different ways most countries address their medical professionals and doctors. You will find cultures where people still combine both traditional and modern medicine. There are also differences in terms of time and personal space, as well as the manner in which they administer and schedule the procedures.
The way you address a professional is quite significant in many societies and cultures around the world. It would be extremely offensive if your language includes a totally wrong formality style. Regardless of whether your content includes accurate translation.
In this blog, we discussed the top 3 challenges that most medical translators face on a day-to-day basis. It’s a field of translation where room for errors is zero and you need 100% accuracy every time. Therefore, it’s imperative that you only work with professional medical linguists who are subject matter experts. Plus, they know the languages well and have command over cultural differences.
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