Information Now

Interpreting and translation

There are a range of organisations that provide interpreting and translation services in Newcastle. This section gives information on some of these.

Bilingual Services and Interpreted Advice

If your first language isn’t English, you may sometimes need an interpreter or translator to help you understand what is being discussed. This is particularly important if you are having a carer’s assessment or receiving medical advice.

There are several ways in which you can access interpretation services depending on when and where you need them. Here are a few suggestions of where you might find an interpreting or translation service in Newcastle.

Newcastle City Council offer a range of ways to access their services. They can arrange British Sign Language (BSL)/English interpreters, lipspeakers, notetakers, deafblind interpreters and speech to text reporters.

Language Empire are a National organisation that provide a wide-range of services for companies, organisations, charities, businesses and service providers. Their services include:

  • Face-to-Face Interpreters
  • Document Translation of any kind
  • Telephone and Voice Interpreting
  • British Sign Language

The National Register for Public Service Interpreters is the UK’s independent voluntary regulator of professional interpreters specialising in public service. The National Register is free of charge to access and searchable online.

The North East British Sign Language website shows a list of the professional sign language interpreters working in the North East.

The NHS 111 service now has a British Sign Language interpreter, provided by InterpreterNow, available via computer webcam from 8am to midnight. Using your computer and webcam, you make a video call to a BSL interpreter. The interpreter telephones an NHS 111 adviser and relays your conversation with them. The NHS 111 adviser will ask you questions to assess your symptoms, then give you the healthcare advice you need or direct you straightaway to the local service that can help you best.

SignHealth is a Deaf-led charity with expertise in issues related to access and health.

SignLive provide interpreter services for the Care Quality Commission (CQC)

Translated Health Information

The NHS provide online language translation.

The HAREF network will identify areas where it is difficult to access the information you need.

You can access interpreting services through your GP,  nurse practitioner,  other health service and local organisations. 

Information NOW uses Recite ME so that you can translate an article, information, organisation or event into your language of choice. There are also a number of translations into an audio file including Hindi, Chinese and most European languages.

The Patient Information Centre offers a range of health related information including;

  • medical conditions
  • procedures and treatments
  • details about self help and support groups
  • information about complaints procedures
  • copies of leaflets in many languages

NHS online has health information in a range of languages other than English.

NHS 111 has a confidential translation service. To speak to someone in a language other than English, call NHS 111. When your call is answered, say the English name of the language you would like to use. Wait on the line until you are connected to an interpreter, who will help the NHS 111 staff to give you the health information or advice you need.

Alternatively, you can ask a friend or relative to make the call on your behalf. Wait until an interpreter is on the line before you explain why you are calling.

Last updated: September 2, 2021

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