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Local linguist voices spirit of TT with hospital translation service

Monday, 4 June 2018

A multi-lingual Island resident has chalked up a decade as a volunteer translator at Noble’s Hospital during TT fortnight, helping to reassure and guide overseas visitors. 

Polish-born Susanne Gallagher has worked in a variety of roles in Germany, France, Belgium and the UK during a long career, becoming fluent in several European languages.

Susanne has offered her services as volunteer translator at Noble’s during TT and the Manx Grand Prix, now Festival of Motorcyling fortnights, every year since retiring to Isle of Man with her husband 10 years ago.

Local linguist voices spirit of TT with hospital translation service

Based at a desk in the Noble’s reception area, Susanne is available seven days a week to assist both visitors and health care staff. A typical day’s work sees her help patients find their way around the hospital, explain how they can pay for treatments or obtain temporary registration with a local GP and translate hospital menus.

She also has spent up to five hours with a visitor in the Emergency Department and is in demand across the hospital in areas from the wards and pharmacy to theatre and intensive care, where consultants have in the past asked her to translate for patients and their families. Susanne also helps out translating for Ramsey District Cottage Hospital.

Susanne said:

‘I do this because I love the Isle of Man. I want to keep my brain active and use my skills to help other people. Being on hand to point people in the right direction when they arrive at Noble’s and explaining how things work, is reassuring at what can be a stressful time, and it also helps the hospital by reducing delays.

She added:

‘I hope by making visitors feel welcome I can add in a small way to building a positive reputation for the Island.’ 

Executive Director of Health and Care Michaela Morris has thanked Susanne for her contribution:

‘The Department and our Island visitors are so lucky to be able to call upon Susanne at times when we have such a demand for her particular skill set, particularly as she continues to provide this fabulous service on a purely voluntary basis. She works tirelessly and enthusiastically helping as many people as she can in whatever way she can. A huge thank-you from us all!’

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