12 Jun

It’s a language, and a relatively widely spoken one at that.  I had no idea, so I’m feeling a lot less wordly than I did a few days ago.

My last ED shift was the Friday/Saturday overnight.  At around 4am, I was having a conversation in Maninka–pretty cool, hunh?  The hospital has these interpreter phones that can actually work brilliantly well.  Within about 90 seconds of placing the call, I had a fluent speaker of Maninka on the other line, translating for my patient and me.  Of course, it was all a bit awkward to have to explain the purpose and procedure of a pelvic exam through the voice of a gruff old man, but the point was conveyed and the patient consented.

(By the way, if you have a chronic, not too troubling complaint and you don’t have insurance, 4am is a fantastic time to go to ED in order to be seen in a somewhat timely fashion.)


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