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Post Pulse ORMC To Make Interpreters More Visible

The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Orlando Regional Medical Center has more Spanish interpreters today than it did during the Pulse tragedy nearly a year ago. ORMC has 71 Spanish interpreters now, up from 57 last year.

Officials attribute the increase to general growth and not specifically tied to Pulse. The hospital’s Director of Diversity Marisol Romany said interpreters have a limited role.

“They’re not the ones giving the information, they’re only a conduit of information, so they’re almost supposed to be invisible and only present in the room when someone else is providing that information and they’re the conduit,” said Romany.

In the immediate aftermath of the Pulse tragedy ORMC called up a handful of interpreters to help the patients who needed them.

Family members in the waiting room have said there was a great need for more interpreters to get them information faster. ORMC says it had a sufficient amount. The hospital says the slow response in getting information to families had more to do with patient privacy and the flow of information from police to hospital officials than with the number of interpreters.

Romany said ORMC realizes it may have helped during Pulse to better identify who the Spanish speakers in the room were. She said for the future– the plan is to have interpreters wear vests that clearly label them as a Spanish speaker.

ORMC also said it has virtual interpreters that can be accessed through tablets and by phone around the clock.