Interpreter services are available at all Queensland Health hospitals and health centres 24 hours a day, at no charge to the patient. All Queensland Government agencies are required to provide and pay for qualified interpreting services for customers who are hearing impaired or have difficulties communicating in English.
They help by relaying information between the patient and the government agency, either:
- on-site—physically present at the time
- through video conference
- over the phone.
Upon request staff will arrange an interpreter for your next appointment. Your Doctor may request an interpreter when a referral is made to the hospital for you to be seen.
The Queensland Government Language Services Policy states that NAATI accredited or recognised professional interpreters should be used and that non-professional interpreters should not be used unless the situation is urgent and a professional interpreter is unavailable. Qld Government liaise with the service provider to request the service. It is the responsibility of the Service provider, e.g. Auslan Connections, Oncall, 2M to employ, allocate and manage the interpreter.
For all Non-urgent requests, you can request an interpreter by emailing SC-Interpreter_Service@health.qld.gov.au
After hours and on-call emergency services can be accessed at the hospital, alert the staff by pointing to the Interpreter symbol/Auslan symbol at the reception desk. You may also request a Queensland interpreter card to present whenever you are liaising with a government agency, the card will inform the staff member to request an interpreter in the correct language. Please email MAQ@dlgrma.qld.gov.au to request your own Queensland interpreter card.