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Providing culturally competent communication to Massachusetts General Hospital's diverse workforce has been a top priority during the COVID-19 response. As part of hospitalwide efforts, Spanish, Arabic, Haitian Creole and English-speaking physicians offered their linguistic and clinical expertise during 10 educational sessions with Nutrition and Food Services and Environmental Services staff. These clinicians then created videos that answered common questions to help ensure the distribution of accurate and timely information was readily accessible in multiple languages.

Mass General Translators

Yousef Badran, MD“Since COVID-19 arrived in our community, I've had multiple conversations with my Arabic-speaking patients in addition to a fraction of the more than 300 Arabic-speaking Mass General employees. I’ve seen clearer than ever how important being able to ask questions and hear recommendations in your native tongue is. It alleviates anxieties, provides a safe space to discuss cultural-specific concerns and most importantly ensures accurate dissemination of crucial information. Creating content in our patients' languages is a part of our duty. We owe this to our community."

Yousef Badran, MD, resident in the Department of Medicine

Samuel Slavin, MD“As part of the COVID-19 response efforts, I contributed to the creation of educational materials in Haitian Creole and led a session for Creole-speaking employees. The Haitian community in Boston has been hit hard by COVID and many of our fellow hospital employees are a part of these communities, in addition to working on the frontlines as essential staff. Most importantly, I believe we are all in this together, but to truly be in this together we need to share in the same conversation. That is why I joined this initiative.”

Samuel Slavin, MD, resident in Internal Medicine

Diane Barragan Bradford, MD“When I realized the amount of misinformation about COVID-19, particularly in the Hispanic community, I felt an immediate call. As a native Spanish-speaking clinician, I wanted to help alleviate the stress and anxiety brought on by these uncertain times.”

Diane Barragan Bradford, MD, resident in the Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine

Lizbeeth Lopez, MD"Providing medical advice in someone’s native language is crucial to ensure that nothing is lost in translation. I know this well as I am a daughter of immigrants from El Salvador. Therefore, when I was asked to provide videos for the Mass General staff that spoke primarily Spanish, I jumped at the opportunity to help. I was blown away by Mass General's response to help address the large number of Spanish-speaking patients affected by COVID-19 through the creation of the Spanish Language Care Group, a group that I found to be so inspiring and a role that I found to be very rewarding." 

Lizbeeth Lopez, MD, resident in the Department of Anesthesia