Jasper County health officials making resources for non-English speakers a priority during covid outbreak

Joplin Area Coronavirus

JASPER COUNTY, Mo. — With the number of covid-19 cases increasing in Jasper County, health officials are making it a priority to provide resources for non-English speakers.

Is there a noticeable outbreak right now in Jasper County among the Hispanic Community?

Dierdre Schofield, Interpreter, Jasper County Health Dept says, “Yes there is.”

Translators with the Jasper County Health Department say in the past few days they’ve seen an increase in calls from non–English speaking residents.

“Wanting to know where they can get tested, if we can test them here, and then just basic questions, what can we do you know to avoid getting sick.”

Because many Hispanic people are family oriented and may live in close proximity, social distancing can sometimes be difficult.

“What we’re having to translate is what is quarantine, what is the isolation, why do we need to take our temperatures everyday and report them to you.”

Schofield says while words like quarantina and isolamento are common in the Spanish language, the idea of separating from others, especially family, can be challenging.

“They don’t understand the need to stay apart and not go to each other’s homes and houses and stuff. But, they’re learning and as time progresses we are seeing that they’re tending to comply.”

But with cases increasing significantly by the day, now is the time to take action.

“It’s not back to normal, we still need to practice the social distancing.”

There are a number of resources available online for Spanish speakers, including the CDC website. But with a shortage of translators, other informational literature is limited.

“We just give them the quarantine orders because it’s pretty explanatory what they need to do. Because we’re very thorough.”

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