The role and experiences of Burmese healthcare interpreters worki | 49906

Primary Health Care: Open Access

ISSN - 2167-1079

The role and experiences of Burmese healthcare interpreters working with health professionals in Thai maternity services

Annual Child and Family Healthcare Nursing Conference

August 13-14, 2018 Bali, Indonesia

Titaree Phanwichatkul, Elaine Burns, Pranee Liamputtong and Virginia Schmied

Western Sydney University, Australia

Scientific Tracks Abstracts: Primary Health Care

Abstract :

Background & Aim: Recently, there has been a large increase in the number of migrant workers coming from Burma to Thailand. This has necessitated an appropriate response from Thai health services and access to healthcare interpreters has become an imperative. The aim is to explore the role and experiences of Burmese healthcare interpreters working with the Thai health professionals in maternity care. The perspectives of health professionals and Burmese women about the role of the Burmese healthcare interpreters are also examined. Method: This study used an ethnographic approach. Individual interviews were conducted with four Burmese healthcare interpreters, nine health professionals and 10 Burmese women. Observations of the interactions among the participants of the study occurred in the antenatal and postnatal care. The data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Findings: Participants described two core components to their role being a communication aid and doing healthcare work. Collaboration between the interpreters and health professionals facilitated this role. Both the health professionals and the Burmese women relied on the Burmese healthcare interpreters to interpret for them. The interpreters also believed that the on the job training they received could open up other employment opportunities. However, some challenges in the role such as the poor remuneration and lack of clarity of role. Conclusion: Despite the challenges, the interpreters described the benefits for themselves and the Burmese community. This model of in-hospital and clinic-based interpreting and healthcare service may be applied in the migrant populations are living on the borders to encourage them to attend antenatal care.

Biography :

Titaree Phanwichatkul is a Registered Nurse and Midwife with the Thailand Nursing and Midwifery Council. She is employed as a Lecturer in Nursing and Midwifery, Faculty of Nursing, Suratthani Rajabhat University, Thailand. Her expertise is in teaching student nurses regarding nursing and postpartum care in clinics and hospitals. She is currently studying as a PhD student at the School of Nursing and Midwifery, Western Sydney University, Australia. Her current research focuses on Myanmar women’s experience of maternity care in the south of Thailand.