What is a Medical Translator

What Is A Medical Translator?

(Last Updated On: July 13, 2020)

No profession is as straight forward as it seems. There are multiple layers of every job. So, if you decide to join a profession, don’t do so without learning everything about it first. You will have to become completely familiar with it if you wish to succeed in your field. It is not enough to see a TV show about a profession and believe everything that characters do in it. You will have to do proper research by reading about the subject. You will also have to enroll in a college to study your profession. You must also get experience in the field so you can get ready to enter the professional life.

Medical Translation:

Humans live all over the world and speak their unique languages. They won’t be able to understand each other, even if they want to, without the help of someone familiar with different languages. This isn’t something limited to our general conversations. In every field, from business to medical, translation is very important. In the healthcare industry, people often confuse translation with interpretation. But the latter is helpful when doctors and patients have to communicate with each other and need the help of an expert. Interpretation is more suitable for real-time conversations. Many hospitals have in-house interpreters so they can easily treat patients who speak a foreign language.

On the other hand, translation is when an expert handles documents related to the healthcare industry. They are of a wide variety. They can be patients’ reports, training documents about medical devices, medical bulletins, etc. The expertise of a linguistic expert is also needed during clinical trials. Without their help, a whole lot of research would not be possible, and medical science will fail to make new discoveries.

Duties of Medical Translators

What is a Medical Translator?

A medical translator is someone who has enough background knowledge about the industry they work in. They will know the basic information about the healthcare industry. They must have adequate knowledge of the subject matter due to the sensitive data that they will be handling. They must also have a good command of language because, without it, they won’t be able to perform their duties efficiently.

Duties of Medical Translators:

Unlike hospital interpreters, medical translators can take their time while working on documents. This works in their favor because they have a lot of sensitive material to handle, and a small mistake can lead to big problems for healthcare professionals. Regardless of where medical devices and medicines are created, they are sent all over the world. But most countries demand to have literature about the devices and medicines in their official language. It is up to medical translators to effectively translate the material so it can be used by people in different parts of the world. If a single instruction is translated inaccurately, it can put people at risk. It is the same case with clinical trials. Researchers wish to be able to communicate with the subjects in their native language, which is why they need the help of linguistic experts. This way, authentic studies can be conducted, and the correct results can be obtained.

Medical Translation support


Although the job of a medical translator is different from that of a linguistic expert who handles business documents, the process is almost the same. Every expert begins by thoroughly examining the document that is assigned to them. They will create a strategy in their head and then start working on it.

Most experts rely on online software for features like translation memory. They can also access special dictionaries through these tools. The tools help linguistic experts in the completion of their jobs. They also save the time of the experts. With the help of the tools, an expert will create their first draft. By reviewing the first draft, they will know what changes to make in it. They will correct the mistakes and make the necessary changes. Once the file is free of errors and looks as close to the original as possible, it will be handed over to a proofreader.

The duty of the proofreader is not just to check the mistakes but to make sure that the formatting works well with the language. They will remove the formatting errors to make sure the final file looks clean and simple. This way, it will be easier for readers to go over the document. The client will receive the document so they can review it and give their feedback. At this stage, clients usually don’t ask for any changes. But if they do, the translator makes them quickly to save the client from waiting for long. All of this becomes possible because the linguistic expert had gotten the necessary training in their field and then worked small projects to get experience.

It is important to keep in mind that if you decide to become a medical translator, you will have multiple options to choose from whenever you start working. You can attach yourself to a big hospital, work as a freelancer, or join an agency. If you go with an agency, then you can pick different projects each time. Not only will you be able to help the healthcare professionals, but you will also get the chance to assist researchers frequently. You will learn about new studies and get a chance to marvel at the progress of medical science. So, consider all of your options and their pros and cons before you make a decision.

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