How Translation Services Saved My Mother’s Life

One minute you may be well, the next moment you may be very ill. This happens all the time to people who suffer from conditions associated with allergic reactions. Common allergic conditions include dermatitis, food allergies, allergic rhinitis, eczema, acute bronchitis and asthma, among others. When these conditions manifest it is very important for the patient to be rushed to a medical doctor without delaying to avoid major complications or death of the patient. Imagine a situation when you take a loved one to the hospital where you and the doctor can’t communicate in the same language. The doctor won’t be able to understand your medical history and could make a major mistake without realizing it. The situation can only be fixed when you have access to accurate translation services. Such a situation happened to me when my mother suddenly experienced a serious asthmatic attack.

People with asthma may go for long periods without having an attack or developing any symptoms. However, when these attacks do occur, and the patient is not rushed to a hospital, they may lose their life in a matter of minutes.

So on this fateful day, my mother had an asthma attack. The day still remains vivid in my mind and the minds of the rest of my family members, as it was the birthday of my younger sister. She was turning sixteen, and everybody was in a great mood. It was all fun and games, and everything was going perfectly until it was time to cut the cake.

My mom, who had been standing by the entire time, suddenly lost her balance and fell down. She started coughing, had difficulty talking and her face turned pale almost immediately. We knew it was an asthma attack as she had a similar one about a month prior. We tried giving her an inhaler and trying to make her use it, but this didn’t help much. We had to rush her straight to the nearest hospital. No one could believe that such a great day could turn tragic so suddenly.

The nearest hospital was just five minutes from where we were. It was at the hospital where the real challenge began. We didn’t think about the fact that we were in a new country, Spain, where everyone besides us spoke Spanish. The communication barrier that we had with the hospital staff almost cost my mom her life. While the doctors stabilized her quickly, they couldn’t decipher her medical history and therefore couldn’t follow her asthma plan. Every asthma patient has a personal asthma action plan that doctors follow in case of an attack. Such a plan is usually recorded in the patient’s medical history.

Desperation started creeping in slowly.

But just like the saying goes, there is always light at the end of the tunnel. Someone suggested a firm that offered translation services to the doctors. The firm translated my mother’s medical history to Spanish; we were also able to communicate clearly with the doctors. In no time, mom was taken care of and the attack subsided. We couldn’t wait to get home and continue with the partying.

I will forever be grateful to those firms who offer translation services. They saved my sister’s birthday and my mother’s life!