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COVID-19 is the biggest medical translation project in history

Published on June 26th, 2020

The coronavirus outbreak has affected every aspect of life, to such an extent that nobody truly knows if things can return to normal again. With so few reasons for optimism in recent months, it can be difficult to see any silver linings, even as a growing number of countries emerge from lockdown.

One of the most challenging aspects of the pandemic has been its divisiveness, forcing us into social distancing and forcing governments to close borders. Yet, while the world’s nations and households build barriers, the global medical community has been breaking them down, coming together to share ideas, data and insights to produce vaccines and other treatments.

The medical world comes together to fight COVID-19

The coronavirus outbreak has forced countries around the world to adopt isolationism in a bid to curb the spread of the virus and protect native populations. However, even as nations were closing their borders to outside visitors, the medical experts and scientists from around the globe united under a common goal.

The medical world came together to fight COVID-19 in a way that we have never seen before.

Vaccines that would normally have taken years to develop were ready for trial within months, thanks to a combination of intense collaboration between leading scientists and the latest technology allowing experts to work together, regardless of their physical location.

New drugs have been developed, trials have been fast-tracked and research findings have been published openly for all to access and use in their own efforts against the virus. Global medicine has never had such a strong sense of community and mutual gain. As a result, we are seeing unprecedented progress being made when it comes to learning about COVID-19 and devising methods to tackle its spread.

The biggest medical translation project in history

With the world’s medical experts and scientists coming together, physical boundaries have been dismantled, but language barriers remain. The speed of the response to coronavirus has been outstanding, but this pace is heavily reliant on the speed and accuracy of medical translation when information is being shared between China, the EU and English-speaking nations, for example.

It is not only the front-line of medical research and production that relies on translation, either.

Information ultimately needs to reach the general public when it comes to preventative measures, isolation guidelines and best practices. When the global stance on the effectiveness of face masks is changing every day, the slightest delay in new findings being published can have a major impact on the spread of infections – and this is just one example of many.

Some might assume that the English-speaking medical community drives the majority of innovations, too. But some of the most important findings are coming from Asian nations: China, South Korea, Japan and Singapore to name a few. While some of the more elaborate responses to coronavirus are taking place in Germany, Sweden and parts of Africa, with varying successes.

All of these responses to the virus produce important findings that the rest of the world can learn from. While the coronavirus outbreak poses the biggest global health challenge in more than a century, the global medical community has come together in a way never seen before. Aside from a willingness to overcome the virus, medical experts have the technology to collaborate remotely and share data instantly. Likewise, medical translators are able to work from anywhere in the world and deliver the fast, accurate translations required to facilitate such a rapid response.

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Posted on: June 26th, 2020