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A Year in Language Services: Review of 2014

2014 was a very busy year for CyraCom and healthcare language services, and we have accomplished a lot together. We added another interpreter contact center in Houston, grew our employee interpreter count to 1,500 employee interpreters, and launched a mobile interpreting app. But how has this helped our clients? Let’s explore.

At the beginning of 2014, we saw the Affordable Care Act cover millions of previously uninsured LEPs. We helped hospitals understand how this change would affect them and prepare. Since budget pressures for language services were becoming increasingly concerning, we did some investigating. We got tips from other hospitals on how to cut costs while increasing availability of language services. We also learned what the real cost of readmission is and how it affects the rest of your budget. Finally we made sure how your facility can place the appropriate focus on HCAHPS surveys for LEPs.

Video Remote Interpreting was a huge topic in 2014. We explored the benefits of VRI and discussed when the best time to use it is. We interviewed various hospitals who have had success with their video interpreting programs, andlearned what their secret was. Earlier this year, we came out with the CyraCom Interpreter app, allowing clients to connect to interpreters over video or phone via their smart phone or tablet devices. We’ve had a lot of clients adopt the app and set up iPad VRI infrastructure in their hospitals. We’ve been collecting and sharing best practices here as well, hosting VRI virtual roundtables and live group discussions on VRI.


With all of this activity, the ASL community has been a large focus this past year. Victor Collazo, CyraCom’s Director of ASL Operations, put on CyraCom’s first annual ASL-VRI Community Forum. This event brought the local Deaf and Hard of Hearing Community together to view a CyraCom contact center and better understand how VRI can help them. Hospital staff also need help communicating with the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community, so we outlined some helpful tips here as well. 2015 will see much more community outreach like this.

Due to new topics like this and others, we saw the need to start bringing hospitals together to talk about the challenges and successes they were having. In 2014, we conducted five, successful regional roundtable programs in major cities that brought together industry speakers and hospitals to network and discuss best practices in healthcare language services. As a culmination of these events,  CyraCom hosted its first annual Healthcare Language Services User Summit. Feedback from the Summit was extremely positive, with many clients stating that this was the most educational language services event they had ever attended. We plan to do many more roundtables and another User Summit in 2015.

Palomar Pomarado Health Medical Center West by CO Architects pho

2014 was packed with learning, sharing, and growing. We’ve audited what to look for in a language services provider together. We’ve trained staff on how to effectively work with interpreters together. We’ve implemented National Patient Safety Goals together. We’ve even prepared for a possible Ebola outbreak scenario together. Thanks for all of your help. We’re honored to be a part of a community of such dedicated, passionate healthcare staff, and we’re looking forward to tackling all of the challenges and opportunities of the next year with you.

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