How long does it take to translate medical records?

Tłumaczenie dokumentacji medycznej

How long does it take to translate medical records?

It depends on many factors how long it takes to translate medical records into a foreign language — professional knowledge and experience of a translator, the subject area, and the amount of work, as well as how legible the text is. When setting deadlines, you also need to consider the purpose of the document, i.e. where it will be submitted. Translation of medical texts is an extremely difficult task because the subject area is complex and requires knowledge of many special terms. Therefore, jobs like that should only be assigned to experienced translators. How long does it usually take to work on medical documents?

Language skills alone are not enough

If you are a translator wishing to have no complaints about the lack of orders, you should focus on a specific area. Translating medical texts primarily calls for a good understanding of the meaning and knowledge of terms. This does not mean that the translator must necessarily be a doctor, biotechnologist, or pharmacist. However, it is important that they be aware where to get reliable information when in doubt. A specialist in this type of translation must also be familiar with the specific parlance used by both doctors and patients. Medical personnel in various countries use their own notation. On the other hand, patients often use abbreviations or names of organs or diseases borrowed from the spoken language. Therefore, a translator/interpreter is up against not only a linguistic, but also a communicative challenge.

Requirements and opportunities for improvement

Before making their first medical translation, a translator must properly hone their skills. Courses as well as advice from more experienced colleagues will help. A college degree in medicine is extremely helpful, but not necessary. A translator can never afford to stop developing professionally. They must update professional literature on both medicine and translation theory on a regular basis. Some necessary character traits for a medical translator are accuracy and thoroughness. A medical translator may not adjust the translation according to the customer’s wishes. Translating prescriptions or patient documentation requires a strategy that differs from that applied to operation manuals for medical equipment. Texts intended for a doctor or a nurse may contain special vocabulary, but the leaflet for a regular user must first and foremost be understandable.

Highly confidential information

All medical texts contain a lot of private information about the patient, therefore, maintaining confidentiality is a priority. To this end, translation agencies sign NDAs with their clients. As a result, a customer can be assured that their data is safe — this applies to individuals as well as large pharmaceutical corporations. This protects companies from leaks of important data, such as patents or products in their portfolio.

Нow long does it take to translate medical records?

There is no definite answer. Factors that affect translation speed are too varied. First of all, you need to consider the level of complexity and the volume of the text in question. Importantly, translators work on the basis of standard pages. A typical standard page consists of 1,800 characters with spaces. Each agency may interpret it differently, though, so sometimes even 1,700 or 1,600 characters can be treated as one page. For certified or sworn translations, this standard amount is specified in the relevant law and is 1,125 characters.

What if the deadline is close at hand?

If you want to have medical documents properly translated in the shortest possible time, contact a professional translation provider. Our company offers a wide range of translation services, including medical translations — check us out! We are headquartered in Warsaw and translate from Japanese, Chinese, Ukrainian, Belarusian and Russian. Our offerings benefit both individual customers and companies.