National board launches online database of certified medical interpreters

September 21, 2010

The National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters has launched the National Registry of Certified Medical Interpreters, which serves as a central online resource to verify the credentials of Certified Medical Interpreters.

The National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters has launched the National Registry of Certified Medical Interpreters, which serves as a central online resource to verify the credentials of Certified Medical Interpreters (CMI).

The country’s first CMIs were designated in July 2010, followed by hundreds of others who have taken the National Board's written medical interpreter certification exam. Those who have passed the written and oral exams are now part of the growing registry of certified medical interpreters.

“The new online registry greatly enhances the functionality of the National Board's website and provides medical interpreters and healthcare providers alike a helpful tool to better serve limited-English speaking patients,” said Nelva Lee, PhD, Chair of the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters. “The mission of the National Board is to ensure patient safety by evaluating and assessing the competency of medical interpreters through a single national certification program. The registry supports this mission by providing an easy way to find qualified interpreters throughout the country.”

The National Registry of Certified Medical Interpreters is a searchable online registry that provides further evidence of CMIs’ credentials, in addition to the certificate and wallet card they receive. The registry can be searched by interpreter name, city, state, language, and other categories. In addition, healthcare organizations with very specific interpretation needs can conduct refined searches within the registry by extending the search parameters.

“Finally, there is a gold standard for the interpreting and translating community. Similar to the bar examination for lawyers, and the medical boards for doctors, the National Medical Interpreting Certification Examination represents the pinnacle in achievement for the medical language professional, and the National Registry of Certified Medical Interpreters will be a dynamic professional resource that will continue to promote and further the long-term goals of the medical interpreting profession,” said Ricardo Diaz-Canedo, MD, a practicing physician at a UCLA-affiliated program and a medical interpreter with more than 15 years of experience.

There is no fee for access to the National Registry of Certified Medical Interpreters, making it a valuable resource for hospitals, healthcare organizations, and potential employers wishing to identify certified medical interpreters and review their language skills and credentials. The registry will be continually updated as candidates move through the exams and earn the CMI designation.