Vanderbilt Interpreter Services helps patients who are deaf and hard of hearing, visually impaired or speak limited English. When you schedule an appointment, indicate your need for an interpreter.
Our services may be provided on site or by phone. In some circumstances, video services may be available. Vanderbilt Health’s free interpreter services include:
If you need interpreter services on the phone before calling Vanderbilt Health, we offer those services for adults and pediatrics in five languages — Spanish, Arabic, Burmese, Nepali and Somali. Click here to download instructions.
Vanderbilt provides interpreters for free in accordance with federal law. Please do not ask the patient to bring their own interpreter. Medical interpreters are highly skilled professionals and have specialized training in interpretation technique, medical terminology and interpreter ethics.
Ask the patient if he or she needs an interpreter and update the demographic information in the chart to reflect the patient’s language. If the patient doesn’t need an interpreter because they speak English fluently, the patient language should be changed to English in the demographic section.
When a non-English-speaking patient schedules an appointment, we receive an automatic interpreter request. You don't need to call the office to schedule an interpreter unless you need an interpreter for surgeries, procedures not scheduled through EPIC, or last-minute requests. If you need an interpreter any time, and an on-site interpreter is not available, call 2-7378, select option 2 and follow the prompts and have your account/pin number ready. Or you can call (866) 874-3972 and have your client ID ready. If you need an account/pin OR client ID, please contact 2-7378, select option 1, during regular business hours of 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday.
If the patient cancels an appointment, the interpreter will be cancelled automatically, and the new appointment will show up in our list of new requests. If an on-site interpreter isn’t available for the appointment, call a phone interpreter at 2-7378, select option 2, follow the prompts and have your account/pin number ready or call (866) 874-3972 and have your client ID ready.
When an onsite interpreter isn’t available, it is mandatory that staff use a video or phone interpreter to serve our patients. Please do not make a patient wait for an onsite interpreter. As a reminder, we serve Spanish and Arabic only with onsite interpreters. Interpretation for all other languages, as well as overflow for Spanish & Arabic, must be provided by video or phone.
For services for the deaf and hard of hearing, please contact Bridges directly by email at email@example.com, or by phone at (615) 248-8828.
We offer on-site interpreters in Spanish and Arabic. When you schedule an appointment for an LEP patient, Interpreter Services receives an automatic interpreter request in EPIC. If you do not use EPIC, need to schedule a procedure or surgery, or have a last-minute request, you can email the director, firstname.lastname@example.org (subject line should read “OTHER – my area doesn’t use EPIC) or call the office at (615) 322-7378.
Spanish Interpreters (on-site interpreter pager/for use by inpatient staff):
Page (615) 835-9798 in Vanderbilt University Hospital
Page (615) 835-0507 in Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt.
Main Campus Spanish On-Site Hours of Coverage
Sunday: Noon-12:30 a.m.
Monday: 6:30 a.m.-12:30 a.m.
Tuesday: 6:30 a.m.-7 p.m.
Wednesday: 6:30 a.m.-7 p.m.
Thursday: 6:30 a.m.-12:30 a.m.
Friday: 6:30 a.m.-5 p.m.
Saturday: 2-6 p.m.
One Hundred Oaks Spanish On-Site Hours of Coverage
Weekdays: 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Weekends: Use phone service
Arabic Interpreters (on-site interpreter pager/for use by inpatient staff)
Page (615) 835-7676
Main Campus Arabic On-Site Hours of Coverage
Weekdays: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Weekends: Use phone service
One Hundred Oaks Arabic On-Site Hours of Coverage
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
Tuesday, Thursday: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Weekends: Use phone service
Interpreter Services provides 24-hour access to telephone interpreters. You must have your account number and pin from your badge card, or it will be listed on a phone in your clinical area.
The Interpreter Services Office can translate medical center forms. If you need a document translated or revised, e-mail your document in its original editable format to email@example.com. Please write the language you need the documents translated into in the subject line (Subject Line Example: Translation Request – Spanish).
Do not use Babblefish, Google Translate or other online translation tools. This is against Vanderbilt policy.
If the document you need translated includes Protected Health Information (PHI), Research Health Information (RHI) or Personal Information that may contain individually identifiable information about patients, employees, students or research participants, you must use the secure File Transfer Application tool. If you do not have an account, click on “Get Started” on the bottom right-hand side of the window that opens when you click on the link in this paragraph. If you have any questions, please call (615) 322-7378 or (2-SERV).
For education material and repetitively used material, check for available documents on the VUMC Krames/Staywell website. Translations will be filed and may be ordered according to MC or HC number if applicable. Once the translation is complete, the document is filed electronically in Vanderbilt’s e-docs. The translation will share the same MC number as its English-language counterpart. It will be distinguished by a three-letter extension on the end of the number indicating the language used. Some examples of these extensions are ARA (Arabic) and SPA (Spanish).
For more information about finding a reader and/or Braille documents for patients who are visually impaired or blind, please call (615) 322-7378. We can better serve patients that have visual assistive needs when we plan ahead with the patient directly.
Vanderbilt provides interpreter services (on-site and video remote interpretation) for patients who are deaf or hard of hearing. In addition, you may contact a patient by phone who is deaf through the Tennessee Relay Service by dialing 800-848-0299 or 711. (Remember to dial 9 for an outside line before dialing 711, from a Dterm phone.) Please note: 711 dialing access doesn’t work for Video Relay Service, Internet Protocol Relay or IPTCTS Relay calls because they are initiated through the Internet.
Email the director, Hope Collins at firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact the Interpreter Services Office at (615) 322-7378.
Staff who would like to order a list of interpreter phone numbers to clip to their employee badge can call (615) 322-7378.