CASA de Maryland, a Silver Spring, Md.-based immigrant advocacy group, on Thursday released a report saying that Maryland public health clinics had a "shortage" in translation services for immigrants seeking HIV/AIDS services, the Washington Post reports. According to the report, which was funded by the Washington AIDS Partnership, janitors and other untrained workers sometimes must translate personal information to patients, and information on HIV/AIDS often is printed only in English. The report also noted that patients often avoid seeking information or treatment because they fear being exposed to stigma and discrimination in their communities or attracting the attention of immigration authorities. Study author Carmen Valenzuela-Dall said seeking health care is "such an adventure in this country for the undocumented immigrants and the people who don't speak English," adding that governments need to improve services and hire more culturally diverse and bilingual health care workers (Ly, Washington Post, 12/2).
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