Clinical Protocols: the Area of Usage and Recommendations for Translation

Doctors often rely on their own experience and some already existing practice. However, we live in an era when science, including medicine, is developing rapidly, and more effective treatment methods are developing in the world every year. Obviously, the use of any innovations requires a certain qualification and it can be quite difficult for an ordinary medical doctor to follow the technological progress. In this case, clinical protocols come in handy.


What Is the Clinical Protocol?

Over the last few decades, the clinical protocols have firmly entered into the medical practice of the most developed countries. First of all, this applies to Europe and North America.

The clinical protocol is a systematically developed regulatory document written to help doctors prescribe treatment and the patient to monitor the actions of their MD. The documents describe all the solutions of disease and symptoms treatment, possible causes of their occurrence, medication and common recommendations.

Clinical protocols are developed by professional scientific and medical societies, associations of doctors, etc. Information and access to international standards are offered by the Guidelines International Network, which is a worldwide database of diagnostic and treatment recommendations.


The Role of Medical Protocols

The protocol has several tasks to accomplish:

1)     To regulate the prescriptions of treatment;

2)     To provide legal support for doctors and patients;

3)     To improve the quality of medical care;

4)     To improve clinical outcomes (reducing mortality rate, increasing quality of life);

5)     To make a basis for calculating the cost of medical services;

6)     To make a basis for continuing education programs;

7)     To resolve disputes related to professional negligence.

Thousands of scientific articles are published daily in the world, they relate to a particular case or phenomenon. Protocols are a kind of generalization, extraction, state of affairs of today.


The Translation Specifications

To translate clinical protocols and clinical protocol synopses, it is necessary to find specialists with a medical background or education, who are acknowledged in terminology. In addition to the protocol itself, the supporting documentation may be a subject of translation.

The translated material should contain carefully verified medical terminology, which should not be the cause of inaccurate diagnosis, misinterpretation, and mistakes in their activity.

The medical texts require the translator to have a proper understanding of Latin. For instance, in a certificate from an ophthalmologist one can find abbreviations OD, OS, which are deciphered in Latin as oculus dexter, oculus sinister (right and left eye), which can confuse a regular translator. In addition, the names of chemicals, microorganisms, and diagnoses are often given in Latin.


In Conclusion

Of course, there are both positive and negative aspects of treatment standardization. However, it is important to note that clinical recommendations have not only legal but also practical meaning and value.

Moreover, the protocols should not be perceived as something unchanged: they need to be regularly reviewed and updated in connection with the emergence of new results from clinical trials. Taking into account possible consequences, the translation of clinical protocols should be carefully made. Otherwise, it will cost many lives of innocent patients.  

Do you support the appliance of clinical protocols in general? Share your thoughts regarding the topic with us. 

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