Language barriers within primary care consultations: an increasing challenge needing new solutions

Educ Prim Care. 2010 Nov;21(6):385-91. doi: 10.1080/14739879.2010.11493944.


International migration is an increasing global phenomenon, particularly noticeable in the UK where removing barriers to travel and residence within an expanded European Union has brought a huge increase in new arrivals. Migration has increased the number of medical consultations where language barriers occur. This paper summarises findings from a review of the literature and explores the challenges posed within these medical consultations, particularly those in primary care. It highlights limitations to current consultation models and educational interventions to improve consultations across language barriers, and suggests future solutions to those problems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Communication Barriers*
  • Humans
  • Language*
  • Primary Health Care / organization & administration*
  • State Medicine
  • Translating
  • United Kingdom