Study: Doctors’ Language Tests Spotlight Need to Provide Interpreters in Medical Settings
The U.S. population is becoming increasingly diverse. According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey Reports, in 2006, 13.7% of U.S. children under age 5 lived in a home where a parent or guardian spoke English less than “very well”. In medical settings, where effective communication between provider and patient is essential to quality care, language barriers have a negative impact. Research has shown that language barriers affect patient satisfaction and compliance, cost, medical errors, and risk of litigation.
While many doctors in the U.S. have some ability to communicate in a foreign language, there are no standards that determine what degree of proficiency is required to communicate effectively with patients. Often, doctors are left to determine themselves whether they’re up to the task of discussing complex medical information in a foreign language. They may not be the best judges of their own abilities. Read full post »
Children can be especially at risk to experience fear and anxiety as reactions to these events. Research shows that children who witness violence in regular news coverage, as well as in their families, schools and communities, are vulnerable to serious long-term emotional harm.
In the video below, Dr. Bob Hilt, child and adolescent psychiatrist at Seattle Children’s Hospital, discusses ways parents can help their children cope during disasters such as earthquakes, man-made disasters, and random acts of violence.
On the face of it, lean manufacturing, which is used by Toyota and other major global companies, doesn’t seem to fit very well into the world of medicine.
But, on closer examination, surgeons are beginning to see that lean has a good deal in common with the scientific method used in research – it’s just a matter of terminology, although it’s important to point out that this isn’t like randomized controlled trials; instead, it’s about testing hypotheses.
Indeed, the overall goal of lean is to define and refine a process, and then make the end product better for the customer; in medicine, that’s the patient. Read full post »
While tremendous advancements have been made over the past several decades in treating cystic fibrosis (CF), many CF therapies are not one-size-fits-all. What works for adult patients doesn’t necessarily help very young patients. And yet, it’s critical to begin therapies early in life to delay lung disease caused by CF from progressing.
Inhaled hypertonic (extra salty) saline is one such therapy recommended for many CF patients age 6 or older, but its effectiveness has never been evaluated in patients age 5 or younger. Despite this, since 2007 inhaled hypertonic saline has been increasingly used among U.S. children with CF ages 2 to 5.
Several years ago, Australian researchers stumbled on the benefits of hypertonic saline when they noticed that surfers with CF had fewer respiratory flare-ups than people with CF who didn’t surf. The researchers speculated that the salty mist of ocean water lessened respiratory CF symptoms and their subsequent study confirmed their hypothesis. Read full post »
Sometimes even a simple idea can make a difference in people’s lives. In my case, I hope that the creative adaptation of a simple science concept will one day save the lives of premature infants in the developing world.
As a program manager in the Center for Developmental Therapeutics, I support researchers working in the realm of preterm birth and neonatal health. So far, the main focus of that work has been on treatment options for premature infants, including the development of the Seattle Children’s Positive Airway Pressure ( Sea-PAP) device, an easy to use respiratory support device for preemies.
The aim of my research project is to investigate new ways of easily and inexpensively diagnosing lung immaturity in premature infants. Premature birth is a leading cause of neonatal death in the U.S., but not many people realize that it is also a huge issue in developing countries. New research has shown that 15 million premature babies are born each year, and helping preterm infants everywhere lead long, healthy lives is an important goal of my research. Read full post »
It didn’t take Kelly Clarkson very long to find out about Seattle Children’s Hospital patient Chris Rumble’s uplifting music video of her song “Stronger.” Chris posted the video on Sunday and by Tuesday Kelly tweeted, “Oh my goodness y’all have to see this! It’s beautiful! I can’t wait to visit these kids and nurses! It’s Seattle Children’s Hospital, I believe. God Bless y’all!”
Kelly was so moved that today she sent a video response to Chris and all the patients, families, and staff in Seattle Children’s Hospital’s Hematology Oncology unit. Everyone was so excited to hear from her, including many of the video’s star performers.
Check out Kelly’s video and the excitement it created with our patients, families and staff:
Saturday, May 5th, was unlike any other day on Seattle Children’s Hospital’s Hematology Oncology floor. The beats of Kelly Clarkson’s song “Stronger” rang through the halls as patients sang out the familiar chorus, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger…”
Doctors, nurses, parents and patients showed off their best dance moves while harmonizing to the tune with big smiles on their face. Patients held up signs with the words “hope” and “fighter” – all communicating the important message that they are strong.
This fun celebration of strength was thanks to Chris Rumble, a 22-year-old Children’s cancer patient who lives in Kent, Wash., who was recently diagnosed with leukemia in April. Chris had the idea to make a music video to share with his old hockey team in Wenatchee because his teammates had made him a music video for his birthday. Read full post »
For children and their families, surviving cancer is an incredible triumph. The good news is that about 80 percent of children who have cancer now survive their disease (National Cancer Institute). However, this important milestone also marks the beginning of a child’s lifelong journey as a cancer survivor – A journey that may be difficult as their disease and treatment can affect their health for many years to come.
While cancer recurrence may be the overriding fear for many cancer survivors, a recent national study found that nearly half of survivors die of something other than cancer later in life, such as heart disease or diabetes, underscoring the importance of survivors being aware of their long-term risks and overall health. This especially rings true for childhood cancer survivors where about two-thirds suffer from at least one chronic health condition and about one-third have a life-threatening condition, according to a 2006 study in the New England Journal of Medicine. Read full post »
Seattle Children's complies with applicable federal and other civil rights laws and does not discriminate, exclude people or treat them differently based on race, color, religion (creed), sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin (ancestry), age, disability, or any other status protected by applicable federal, state or local law. Financial assistance for medically necessary services is based on family income and hospital resources and is provided to children under age 21 whose primary residence is in Washington, Alaska, Montana or Idaho.