Limited English Proficiency and Patient Safety

IMPROVING QUALITY AND SAFETY FOR DIVERSE POPULATIONS:  AN INNOVATIVE INTERPROFESSIONAL CURRICULUM

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Supported by The Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation

The Disparities Solutions Center, in collaboration with the MGH Institute of Health Professions (MGH IHP) and with support from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation, developed an interprofessional curriculum to educate those in the health professions to:

  • Understand the evidence of disparities and high rate of medical errors, particularly for patients with limited English proficiency
  • Work effectively with interpreters and other care team members to ensure safe, high quality care for patients with limited English proficiency
  • Explore how systems of care can be improved to ensure quality and safety for patients with limited English proficiency in a team environment

This curriculum was pilot tested with an interprofessional group of faculty and students from Harvard Medical School and the MGH IHP School of Nursing and is now available for educators in the health professions who are interested in incorporating training on providing safe, effective care for patients with limited English proficiency in an interprofessional environment. The e-learning modules were also piloted with clinical staff at Massachusetts General Hospital and adopted as part of the Massachusetts General Physician Organization’s annual training requirements in 2015.

This program may be reproduced, distributed, and adapted provided that attribution to the Disparities Solutions Center at MGH and the MGH IHP is clearly stated on any resulting materials using the following language: “These materials were adapted from the curriculum, Providing Safe and Effective Care for Patients with Limited English Proficiency, developed by the Disparities Solutions Center at Massachusetts General Hospital in collaboration with the MGH Institute of Health Professions in 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. Any further use of these materials must credit the DSC and MGH IHP and may be used for non-commercial, educational, or professional development purposes only.”


E-Learning Modules

  1. Module 1: Understand the Issue
  2. Module 2: Work Effectively with Interpreters
  3. Module 3: Improve Systems of Care

Classroom Sessions

Related Materials

  • Recommendations for Implementation (PDF)
  • Evaluation Tools (Word version, PDF version)
  • Harvard Medical Center for Primary Care Innovations Conference