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Oregon Health Care Interpreters Association


Scholarship Program

Navigating health care is difficult enough.




Scholarships through OHCIA- Diamond Project will open pathways to increase access to quality healthcare interpretation for speakers of all languages. JOIN OUR EFFORTS TO ELEVATE VOICES!

It only takes $1,500 for Oregon Health Care Interpreters Association to improve the lives of vulnerable communities, through education.

Your donation will help an individual in pursuit of Healthcare Interpreter Qualification or Certification. Your gift will support their financial path, which could include:

  • Written and oral exam with Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI) or the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI).
  • Oregon Health Authority registration fee.
  • OHCIA mentoring & coaching.
  • 64 hrs. OHCIA training
  • Translation of high school diploma
  • Certification or Qualification process application fee.


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In the United States, more than 20 percent of the population speaks a language other than English at home and 25 million Americans have limited English proficiency (LEP) [source].



More than 45 million people in the US speaks a second language. A 2017 CENSUS report identifies the top languages spoken in the US outside of English:  40.5 million people speaks Spanish, nearly 3.4 million people speaks Chinese and there are speakers and there are 1.7 million speakers of Tagalog. [source].


45 million



Oregon's Refugee Arrival Population - Since 1975, tens of thousands of refugees - 65,832 - have resettled and contribuited to the economic growth of Oregon [source].


Nearly 4 percent of the US population identifies as either being deaf or having serious difficulty hearing, according to the US Census [source].

From the self identified deaf population 60% have expressed difficulty getting interpreting services.



Children interpreting

Within these communities interpretation services by children is having a negative impact in health outcomes.

Children interpreting may be embarrassed by or ignore questions regarding menses, bowel movement, and other bodily functions, and relatives tend to either minimize or emphasize psychopathology, and often answer a clinician’s questions without asking the patient [source].


Longer hospital stays

A study reports that patients who did not receive professional interpretation at admission or both admission/discharge had an increase in their length of stay of between 0.75 and 1.47 days, compared to patients who had an interpreter on both day of admission and discharge[source] . 


Readmission within 30 days

Patients receiving interpretation at admission and/or discharge were less likely than patients receiving no interpretation to be readmitted within 30 days [source].



The OHCIA Diamond Project Scholarship Program has been established to provide scholarship awards for promising students with financial hardships, who would like to become medical interpreters and obtain the necessary credentials to provide professional services to the LEP (limited English proficiency) community. 

Such awards are made possible through our generous donors and sustainable program members. 



Individuals like  Elijah contribute a more vibrant community for everyone by making communication between cultures possible. Your support can be the fuel behind their efforts.

  • Consider giving to support a movement that is helping all people - no matter where they were born - belong and thrive
  • Support immigrants and refugees learn skills to give their families new opportunities.

Your gift will enable us to help LEP communities, achieve health care equity and eliminate health disparities.



Donate what you can. Every gift matters. 


Organize your place of work and raise $1,500 . 


Give the campaign a shout out on social media. Share our posts via Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.


We can’t do this important work without you. 

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Dear OHCIA Community
I would like to say thank you for granting me the scholarship for the 64 hr training in the medical interpretation field. Not only does it help me benefit my community of Russian immigrants who have difficulty with the English language, but it will also help me in my pursuit of my nursing career. Since I now graduated from nursing and am preparing for the NCLEX, the medical interpretation job has allowed me for a steady income with immense flexibility which helps me in my studies and any expenses that I have. In short, medical interpreting is more perfect for me than I ever thought it could be. I plan on continuing to interpret until I get my nursing license, and then use the interpretation experience on my resume. Furthermore, this experience has already helped me with Russian speaking patients that I had while taking care of them in the program. Throughout my career, I plan on traveling the world to with other medical professionals, and this training will help me in communication with the patients. With great joy I write this thank you letter knowing that you are expanding your program to help more immigrants such as I once was. By helping immigrants with their health concerns, in even small communities, you promote the American dream of allowing people to develop themselves and help them pursue their desires.
Thank you so much.
— Diamond Scholarship Russian Recipient- Elijah V. - Fall Training 2017


Give the gift of information in the right language.


Your contribution will open the door to opportunities for individuals, for families and for communities.




Mail Donations to:

Oregon Health Care Interpreters Association

Attention: Diamond Project - Scholarship Program

9220 SW Barbur Blvd. Ste. 119-315, Portland, OR 97219

Contact us about donating: diamond.scholarship@ohcia.org