Are you in need of medical document translation? Before you delve into this difficult task, there are some things you should know, especially if you have never worked with a translation provider before. If you are not fluent in the language you need the document translated to, you are not equipped to handle this task. You can’t just use a multi-language dictionary and translate the text word for word. A lot of the meaning can get lost when the language and culture are not understood. 

Accurate translation of medical documents is extremely important. A mistake could compromise the validity of a clinical trial, lead to a misdiagnosis, or cause an incorrect dosage of a medication to be administered. When lives are at stake, reliable translation is crucial. 

Here are 4 things you need to know before getting a medical document translated. 

1. It is Always Best to Hire a Professional Translation Service

When you need an important document translated into another language that you are not familiar with, it is best to hire a professional translation service. There are both individuals and companies that provide medical translation services, but in most cases it is in your best interest to hire a company.  

Why? Because an individual may be able to translate in one or a few different languages, but their skills are limited. A translation company has a variety of translators on staff that are fluent in a variety of languages. You are more likely to have your needs covered by a larger business. It is especially helpful if you have a large volume of documents that need to be translated, because a bigger company can handle more and complete it in a shorter amount of time. 

2. Not All Translators Specialize in Medical Document Translation

It is important to understand that not all translators and translation companies specialize in medical documentation. A medical translation specialist can understand and translate medical terminology that may otherwise be difficult for someone without experience or knowledge of the medical field in the languages they are translating. 

Look for a translation company that claims to specialize in medical document translation, and then do some research to be sure. Ask what medical organizations they have translated for and even for some examples. It doesn’t hurt to be sure that a business can legitimately do what they say they can. 

3. It Can Help to Hire an Expert on the Specific Medical Subject You Need

In addition to specializing in medical document translation in general, find a company that has experience with the specific subject of your document. Translation in the field of cardiology is quite different from translation in the field of neurology. Ask what medical fields they have experience with and whether or not they know the necessary terminology in the required languages. 

4. A Translator is Different From an Interpreter

Another important distinction is that a translator and an interpreter are very different. A translator specializes in document and text translation. An interpreter listens to a spoken language and interprets it into another language out loud or in sign language. 

Interpreters use different methods, such as simultaneous interpretation (listening and repeating in real time), consecutive interpretation (listening to sections of speech and delivering an interpretation after each section), and whispered interpretation (listening and whispering in real time). 

KONTEKST Specializes in Medical Document Translation 

If you’re in need of medical translation services, KONTEKST is up to the task. Our translators specialize in medical document translation in over 250 languages. Every translated document must pass through a rigorous review process to ensure it is correct and that the cultural nuances and medical terminology are accurate. 

Call +48 22 548 07 00 or contact us today. We look forward to providing you with accurate medical document translation when you need it.