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Spanish for Medical Interpretation

patient and doctorSpanish for Medical Interpretation courses SPA205 and SPA206 give students an opportunity to gain valuable skills that are in high demand within the healthcare industry.

These courses are designed for students who are proficient in English and Spanish, and are interested in pursuing a career in the medical industry. They are also ideal for bilingual healthcare professionals who want to expand their skillsets or maintain their interpreting competencies.

Students are not required to have a medical background to take these classes. The courses teach the medical terminology and how to manage interpretive encounters.

Rio Salado College’s online SPA205 and SPA206 courses were developed as a partnership between Rio Salado College and Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Content for the courses is based on the Spanish Bilingual Assistant: Introduction to Medical Interpreting, 3rd Edition, Manual and Instructor’s Guide. The principal author is Barbara Rayes and the principal medical editor is Jorge Masuello, MD. Updates to the online courses have been provided by Elida M. Testai, MD, MA. 

View the full acknowledgements document to see the entire list of reviewers and contributors.

National Accreditation

Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters logoThe content from these courses has received national accreditation from the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI). Rio Salado College was part of a pilot group and among the first to undergo the process for its Continuing Education Accreditation Program.

Additional Opportunities

SouthWest Skill Center at Estrella Mountain Community College logoStudents who successfully complete SPA205 and SPA206 through Rio Salado have the opportunity to apply for a 40-hour externship through the SouthWest Skill Center at Estrella Mountain Community College. This in-person program provides students with real life interpreting experiences at various hospitals, clinics, and interpreting organizations throughout the Metro Phoenix area.

Graduates of this program will receive a Certificate of Completion (CCL) and preparation for the Certified Healthcare Interpreter exam. Visit the SouthWest Skill Center for more details about the certificate program.

Students can also apply SPA205/ SPA206 credits toward a Rio Salado College Academic Certificate in Language Studies or Academic Certificate in Spanish and Spanish Culture.

More Information

Rio Salado College Faculty Chair for Languages, Dr. Angela Félix, and Karee Peigné, former manager of the Spanish Medical Interpreter Program at Estrella Mountain Community College, discuss courses and programs being offered to address language barriers in the medical field.

To register, please contact a Rio Salado College academic advisor online, at 480-517-8580 or by email at

Course Curriculum

Course # Course Title Credits
SPA205 Spanish for Medical Interpretation I 3
SPA206 Spanish for Medical Interpretation II 3
Click any of the above course #'s for detailed information and register today!

Weekly start dates begin almost every Monday. Contact an academic advisor for additional information.

Medical Interpretation