The Oregon Health Care Interpreters Association (OHCIA), a nonprofit entity under the laws of the State of Oregon, was created April 4, 2011 to promote and further the advancement of the health care interpreter profession.
Due to Shriners Hospital for Children's generous sharing of its facilities, the Association was able to host its kick-off, have all the meetings, and train the first 150 medical interpreters.
As Oregon and the United States as a whole becomes more linguistically diverse, the use of professional, trained, and certified interpreters in medical settings is more important than ever. It is well documented that Limited English Proficient (LEP) patients have difficulty accessing medical care and have poorer health outcomes than the population at large.
OHCIA will provide services to health care providers, community health care organizations, private and public health care organizations, LEP patients, health care interpreters and the general public regarding health care interpreting services. They aim to increase the use and competence of healthcare interpreters and healthcare providers in medical settings with LEP patients.
OHCIA will represent the professional interests of health care interpreters and promote cooperation with government agencies, consumers and other bodies on matters which concern those interests. OHCIA will work to maintain and advance high standards of professional ethics, practices, and competence by supporting educational efforts of health care interpreters and by preserving the professional rights of health care interpreters. In addition, OHCIA will serve as a resource center for the collection, sharing, and dissemination of information for health care interpreters, health care providers, and the public at large.
The first Executive Committee of OHCIA included Chair Susy Molano, Vice-Chair David Cardona, Treasurer Rob Kodirov, and Secretary Christine Lau.