Presidential candidate Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.) proposed a national, 24-hour hot line for translation services for hospitals as part of a plan to improve healthcare for Hispanics and immigrants. The plan, still in draft stage, also would call on large hospitals in the nation's 100 largest cities to have translators for the top-five non-English languages spoken in their communities. Edwards said a recent study showed that half of all hospitals serving significant Hispanic populations don't have translation services. He said he wants additional funding to help hospitals hire on-call translators and to train doctors and nurses willing to become translators. Edward's office could not provide an estimated cost for the plan. -- by Tony Fong
Plan would require translators at many hospitals
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