Interpretation Services supports and advances the mission of Mercy Medical Center by providing equal access to medical care to every patient and family who comes to us in need – including persons with communication, hearing, language and vision barriers.
Mercy believes in the inherent dignity and right of all people to be treated with respect and genuine personal concern. Our community has recently experienced an increase in immigrant, refugee and other non-English speaking populations. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, one out of every 10 Des Moines area residents now communicates using a language other than English.
Language barriers can severely impair patient-provider communication, lead to improper diagnosis or treatment, result in life-threatening medical errors and can even keep some patients and families from seeking much-needed medical attention. Mercy understands that it must overcome these barriers in order to ensure that every central Iowan has access to high quality health care.
To that end, Mercy formalized its Interpretation Services Department in 2002, and now provides more than 15,600 hours of services to patients and employees each year. For more information, please call (515) 247-8255 or 643-7446 (TTY).