Importance of Knowing Spanish as a Medical Assistant

Nurse Anesthesiologist

The job of a medical assistant usually includes working directly with patients before and after they are examined by the doctor. The assistant is the first person to greet a new patient and prepare the patient for the doctor. When an assistant is fluent in Spanish, he or she can prepare Spanish speaking patients more quickly and efficiently because there will be no confusion between the assistant and the patient. Spanish is one of the fastest growing languages in the United States, which means that many medical assistants will work with Spanish speakers on a regular basis.

Increase in Spanish Speakers in the United States
The influx of Spanish speaking individuals into the United States has increased dramatically over the past ten years. These immigrants usually do not know how to speak or understand English, which can make helping them at a doctor's office a challenge if the medical assistant does not know Spanish. As the percentages of Spanish speakers continues to grow, the need for service providers who are fluent in Spanish will continue to grow as well. If you can speak or understand Spanish, your patients will feel more comfortable when they visit the doctor's office.

Spanish Speaking Family Members
Even if the patient speaks English, you may still need to speak to family members in Spanish. There are times when a family member needs to know what is going on, especially when the patient is a child and the Spanish speaking relative is a parent. Medical assistants who know Spanish can help ease a family member's mind when their loved one is sick or injured and needs to see a doctor. If the assistant can speak directly in Spanish, the patient will not have to translate for the relatives while he or she is receiving a diagnosis from the doctor.

A New Level of Service for Patients
Offering a Spanish speaker on staff in a medical facility allows that facility to serve a much larger number of patients. The clinic will be a safe place for people whose first language is not always English. As a health care worker, you can feel more confident that the patient and the patient's family understands exactly what is wrong and can follow the doctor's orders for treatment options. The assistant can translate the doctor's orders so that the patient has the correct information and will do what is necessary to become healthy again.

If you are interested in learning some Spanish, please visit Spanish Courses.