Case Study Highlights

  • Delivered savings of £73,000 in nine months
  • Innovative technology that is driving behavioural change across the organisation
  • Utilising new technology to deliver further savings on interpreting support

The Client
Providing life-saving care at the centre of the world’s greatest city is not without its challenges and staff at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in London need partners they can rely on to respond to the needs of residents and visitors alike.

The Challenge

The hospital deals with thousands of people from a diverse range of backgrounds and nations and one of the critical elements in caring for patients effectively is being able to communicate in their own language. In medical situations, nothing can be lost in translation and the hospital needs expert support to deliver vital treatment for everyone who walks through their doors.

However, in times of increasing austerity, the hospital also needs to find major cost savings without impacting on patient care.

The Solution

The hospital has now been working with thebigword for almost four years and has developed a strong and trusted partnership with the global language solutions provider.

In that time, expert linguists from thebigword have helped to tackle health inequalities and support thousands of individuals through challenging health procedures by communicating clearly in their own language.

Every interpreter provided by thebigword has a minimum of three years experience within the NHS so they can accurately translate medical terminology and they also have specific areas of specialism to ensure each procedure is communicated effectively in any language.

The result is that medical staff and patients can rely on thebigword to deliver a linguist that exactly matches their needs and helps to make daunting medical processes easier for all concerned.

Critically, with increasing pressure on budgets, the hospital has turned to thebigword to help find cost savings on the interpretation budget. By working closely together, the two organisations are developing new systems and testing new technology that is already reaping rewards.

One of the first changes to the process was introducing telephone interpreting where appropriate, which enables health workers to instantly access expert translators in more than 250 languages over the phone. The service is fully automated and guides users to the most suitable translator, ensuring patients always receive the support they need.

As part of the process thebigword provided training for key members of staff, created champions to help further the use of the service throughout the organisation and worked with senior management to demonstrate where savings could be made. In just nine months, the hospital saved £73,000.

However, the drive to find more efficiencies is continuing and thebigword is providing new technology to enable bedside interpreting and wireless headsets to allow interpreting on the move.

We’ve worked really closely with the hospital team to understand the issues they face and then develop the new processes they need.

The Business and CAD Manager at the hospital, Andy Denton, deserves a lot of credit. He’s been really hands on in this process and it’s the close partnership with him that has really made this work.

We’ve worked hard to find ways to save money and continue to look for more ways to improve. The staff at the hospital have seen a lot of change and we’ve worked closely with them to help them adapt to that.

The feedback we’ve received from everyone at the hospital has been great and the fantastic thing we’re now seeing is hospital staff coming to us with fresh ideas about how our technology can be used elsewhere.

Eva Dolezalova
Account Manager for Chelsea and Westminster NHS Hospital, thebigword