When I learned that each language team was asked to make a video for our annual staff recognition party, many ideas popped into my head. The only problem was time! Fortunately, I work with a group of highly educated and intelligent Medical Interpreters who are also naturally very team-focused people. One evening, I sent out an invitation to meet and four of them immediately agreed to come at a minute’s notice.
“What would be a great film idea to celebrate employee appreciation day? As we got together brain storming the task, we thought about interviewing the patients on how they view our services and their feedback”, recalled Te-Ling. Great minds think alike! The five of us all quickly agreed to use the video feature on our cell phones to interview one or two patients before or after their appointments. During our hour-long meeting, we discussed what questions to ask and how long they should be. We also talked about how to implement it. One challenge that arose was that many of the group members did not have experience using a phone to record videos. So we decided to have a little fun playing with this phone feature on our phones for a little while. Each of us tried videotaping one another and experimented taking still pictures while the phone was recording.
Hamilton was so task-oriented that he wrote a script in Chinese right away for Interpreters to hand out to patients and I typed it up and made copies for everyone. We even found the Chinese translation of the photo release form to go with the script! At the conclusion of our meeting, an email was sent out to our entire group asking everyone to interview one to two patients/ providers and submit the video clips by the end of the week for editing. My team members got to work on this project almost immediately as video clips started to come in later that week.
Here is what Jane remembered about the interview: “The patient and her husband have been using UMHS Interpreter Services for more than 10 years. I thought it would be great if she could share her experience with us and let us know how we can improve the services we provide to our Chinese speaking patients.”
Yia-Shun noted, “It is helpful and meaningful to know what patients, families and providers think about Interpreter Services. Getting positive feedback makes doctors’ visits easier for patients and staff.” Huangyih interviewed the father of a young patient: “He appreciated what we did for them so they were very happy to show their appreciation by participating in the video interview.”
“Interviewing the check-in staff was fun, and also provided some interesting insights into how the Interpreter scheduling process works from their end. It really is a team effort, and we couldn’t provide our language and cultural services without their help,” said Jessica. Shieling recalled that “It was quite unique. The patient hoped their children would become Medical Interpreters when they grow up”!
Hamilton summed up the experience of our video making as following
1. It was a task, an attitude; just as important as an interpreting assignment.
2. It was team work; it was time to show es’prit de corps.
This was the first group project that the Chinese Interpreters had worked together outside our ordinary interpreting days. A big “thank you” to all the participants of this project, including patients, medical staff, Interpreters and my daughter, Amaya, who graciously helped with video editing.