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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Random County info

From Columbia 2.0 blog
Last night was a big night for Wilde Lake, as the drawings of the proposed residential properties in the WLVC will be presented to the Wilde Lake Village Board.  There will be a three week comment period following the meeting on the residential design.  http://columbia2.wordpress.com/2011/12/19/the-next-step/

From the Horizon Foundation:
The Columbia-based Horizon Foundation today announced a novel language interpretation system intended to help Howard County residents with limited English skills or who are deaf or hard of hearing to communicate with health and medical providers. The program, which uses specialized data tablets located in health provider offices, allows the patients, remote language interpreters and physicians to see one another during an office visit or hospitalization.
"We are pleased that Howard County General Hospital, the Chase Brexton Clinic and the Healthy Howard Access to Care Program have agreed to participate in this 2-year pilot," said Richard Krieg, Foundation President and CEO. "It's the first time in the nation that three types of community health providers will use a high tech interpretation system to help patients with limited English skills."
The hub of the new system is Language Access Network (LAN), a provider of video interpretation services located in Columbus, Ohio. Medically qualified interpreters at the LAN language center will appear on screen in each of the pilot project's delivery sites. Immediate access to over 170 languages, including American Sign Language, will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Interpreter services will be delivered via a dedicated high-speed broadband network and a remote video interpretation platform known as "Martti," an acronym for My Accessible Real Time Trusted Interpreter. Through the pilot program, Howard County General Hospital will deploy eight Martti units, and Chase Brexton and Healthy Howard will each use one.
"From a patient care standpoint, our goal is to provide care to our patients as quickly and effectively as we can, and Martti is definitely helping us do that," said Victor A. Broccolino, President & CEO of Howard County General Hospital: A member of Johns Hopkins Medicine.  "For example, on the first day we went live with the system, we had a woman in the Maternal Child Unit who spoke a particular dialect of Farsi," Broccolino recalled.  "Within five minutes we were able to connect with an interpreter who could communicate in that very dialect to give the patient discharge instructions.  The level of timeliness would have been extremely difficult to achieve before Martti."
Of the county's 280,000 residents, almost 15 percent are foreign born, according to 2010 census figures. "We expect that the new system will significantly enhance access to care for many of these residents," Krieg explained. "The development of this pilot followed Foundation meetings with most of the county's health providers as well as nonprofit and public agencies that serve the foreign born."
Krieg noted that in meetings with school officials, the Foundation learned that it is not unusual for the children of non English speaking parents to be interpreters for their parents and local health providers. "This is undesirable for a number of reasons," Krieg explained. "First, the child can miss an entire school day, and, secondly, it puts the student in a very uncomfortable position, especially if a significant illness is involved."

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