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Trying Means Effort: Giving the Gift of Language

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Navigating the world of health care in a non-native language can be a challenge. But Arleen Lopez and her network of translators are hoping to change that.

Lopez invented Interlingual, an app that helps patients with limited English proficiency to “communicate better with their provider to ensure good quality diagnosis and further treatment,” said the young entrepreneur. By connecting volunteer translators and interpreters across the world with private health care facilities, the app aims to overcome the language barrier between patients and medics.

“By implementing our project, we want patient satisfaction to improve, and we want to see our community feel safer, represented and heard,” said Lopez.

Her idea won an OZY Genius Award in 2021, which gave the entrepreneur “reassurance that the problem with the language barrier needs a solution, and that my project could create awareness,” Lopez said. “I gained confidence in the cause; it meant a lot to me that an idea I once had when I needed it was being recognized.”

Now Lopez is turning her fledgling idea into an app that has the potential to help millions of patients. She’s in the process of getting 501(c)(3) certified to operate as a nonprofit and is seeking partnerships with health care facilities. “Our priority right now is forming a solid basis to keep improving our project,” Lopez said. “I’m hoping this idea turns into something resourceful for my community.”

It’s also been a year of personal growth for this recent graduate of Rutgers University. “I learned to trust myself more and realized that self-love is such an important tool when starting a project on your own,” Lopez said.

I love this.  I have found myself in a few situations, including a medical one, when I tortured my brain trying to dredge up some Spanish to help someone.

Telstar and zsomething like this post

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