Next Article in Journal
Work/Family Conflict of More Importance than Psychosocial Working Conditions and Family Conditions for Mental Wellbeing
Previous Article in Journal
Centering the Complexity of Long-Term Unemployment: Lessons Learned from a Critical Occupational Science Inquiry
Open AccessArticle

Language Discordance in Mental Health Services: An Exploratory Survey of Mental Health Providers and Interpreters

College of Applied Health Sciences, Occupational Therapy, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612, USA
School of Psychology, Family, and Community, Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, WA 98119, USA
Honors College, University at Albany, State University of New York, Albany, NY 12222, USA
Educational and Psychological Studies Department, University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL 33124, USA
Institute of Psychology and Education, Kazan Federal University, 42008 Kazan, Russia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Societies 2020, 10(3), 66;
Received: 13 August 2020 / Revised: 3 September 2020 / Accepted: 4 September 2020 / Published: 14 September 2020
Global migration has contributed to greater language diversity in many parts of the world. Many migrants experience language barriers in their adopted countries. Language barriers hinder access to healthcare, including mental health. There exists little research on the extent of communication difficulties during language discordant mental health services. A cross-sectional observational study design was used to examine prevalence of communication challenges, use of communication best practices, and training needs among mental health providers and interpreters working with immigrants with Limited English Proficiency (LEP) in the United States. Using snowball sampling methods, 38 providers and 34 interpreters were recruited to complete online surveys. Challenges reported by interpreters pertained to technicalities of communication, while those reported by providers pertained to content of communication. Communication best practices such as pre-session briefings and post-session debriefings were used infrequently by providers in the sample. Providers with higher education levels were more likely to endorse some best practices. Fifty-four percent of the providers and 84% of the interpreters were interested in additional training in working with patients with LEP. Findings suggest the need for customized trainings for providers and interpreters to improve the quality of mental healthcare for patients with LEP. View Full-Text
Keywords: language barriers; communication; transcultural mental health; interpreters language barriers; communication; transcultural mental health; interpreters
Show Figures

Figure 1

MDPI and ACS Style

Mirza, M.; Harrison, E.; Bentley, J.; Chang, H.-C.; Birman, D. Language Discordance in Mental Health Services: An Exploratory Survey of Mental Health Providers and Interpreters. Societies 2020, 10, 66.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

Search more from Scilit
Back to TopTop