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International Medical Interpreter Association Appoints IMIA State Representatives

BOSTON, Jan. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- The International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA) unveiled its plan to develop a national structure for its organization. "Our revised bylaws do not stipulate a regional organizational structure. Our members are unevenly distributed among different states and this initiative will help us change that," says Izabel Arocha, IMIA President.

The organization will now have a key representative in those states, starting with thirteen states. This core group will develop the protocols and structure for future incoming state reps. It is also a great venue for leadership development in the organization. Their role is to represent and help IMIA members in their respective states, to organize and initiate activities that will promote the profession, and to collaborate with other associations in their respective states. The state representatives are empowered to initiate IMIA State Chapters, and as such the IMIA Kansas Chapter was just approved by the board, following the steps of the IMIA Rhode Island Chapter, named RIMIA, the first state to do this in 2007.

"Most states in the US do not have a trade association presence specializing in medical interpreting," says Arocha. "There are many state organizations that are promoting language access, 501(c)3 public charity organizations, which is different from a trade association that promotes the profession. The IMIA believes this initiative is an effective way to promote the profession and at the same time foster collaborations with other related language access and trade associations." Members in other states are already inquiring about local IMIA representation.

Medical interpreters need trade representation specific to their needs and working conditions, and the IMIA hopes to fill that gap and to help promote medical interpreting in all states. This will also enable the IMIA to have more solid organizational structure in the implementation of its National Medical Interpreter Certification Program, developed with Language Line University, and to include other testing companies.

About IMIA

The International Medical Interpreters Association (IMIA) is committed to the advancement of professional medical interpreters as the best practice to equitable language access to health care for linguistically diverse patients. Founded in 1986, with over 1,600 members, most providing interpreting services in over 100 languages, the IMIA is the oldest and largest medical interpreter association in the world. While representing medical interpreters as the experts in medical interpreting, associate membership to the IMIA is open to those interested in medical interpreting and language access in health care. IMIA has a division of providers, corporate members, trainers and language-specific groups. (

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    Abbott Thayer

SOURCE International Medical Interpreters Association
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