ISSUE 1 - Jan-March 2020

1. Message From The Chair
2. COVID-19 All Tests On-line
3. Cyber Security: Updated Registry
4. COVID-19 Resources
From the Chair of the National Board

At present, it is hard not to be absorbed - and disturbed - by the news of the day. COVID-19 has caught us by surprise. We have seen crises before but nothing like this. We have pushed past difficulties, and surmount adversities; but this is different, this is new, this is unknown territory.

Due to the current COVID-19 situation, many hospitals and language access agencies are implementing temporary modifications to the delivery of interpretation services. Thus, Medical interpreters around the country are facing multiple challenges. These include facing a dire lack of personal protection equipment (PPE) when working with LEP patients and families, having their hours reduced, or being sent home on leave without pay because of the preferred use of VRI or phone interpreters.

The NBCMI stands behind the medical interpreter's community to have equal access to PPE as part of the essential healthcare team. We support the CDC recommendations to healthcare facilities regarding prioritizing visits to ensure staff and patient safety. Even the Joint Commission issued a statement on the use of face masks brought from home to support healthcare staff:

Healthcare executives should be cognizant of the physical, mental, and financial strain the outbreak has placed on healthcare workers, while they are evaluating options under this unprecedented situation.

What do we do when facing difficult times?
We need to remember our values, our culture, and our priorities. Who we are and what is important to us personally and professionally. When we have solid core values that govern our decision-making, we become more judicial. As a result, we are able to align our values and actions in times of crisis and change. With this state of mind, we need to work alongside with our leaders to review options and offer ideas. We need to be open-minded, be flexible, and be respectful. Moreover, with those Interpreters colleagues under tremendous distress, we should be kind, be compassionate, and supportive.

For many, this pandemic has significantly disrupted the world's way of life, sinking countries' economic systems and placing our personal and professional lives on hold. However, it is also an opportunity to become stronger and put long-awaited plans into action for long-term benefits.

The National Board continues to support our medical interpreter's community by offering non-stop online testing for all those interested in taking advantage of this time at home. Visit our webpage, get prepared, and go to the next level in your profession. Make a dream come true and become a Certified Medical Interpreter. There is not a better time than the present.

Xiomara Armas

Remember: Even after the worst storm, the sun will shine again.

Xiomara Armas, BSBA, CMI- Spanish

Dear CMIs, candidates, and Interpreter communities,

Recently the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have issued updated guidance on measures to be taken to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 disease. In particular, the CDC lowered the number of people that should be able to congregate in the same space from 50 to 10 in the United States.

In order to take precautionary measures, the National Board will move all testing operations online until further notice. Our online proctoring service has the capacity to offer exams around the clock and on weekends to meet the needs of our candidates.

There is much to learn about the newly emerged COVID-19, including how easily it spreads and how it will impact the health care system and the United States as a whole. We recommend you follow the World Health Organization (WHO), Center for Disease Control (CDC) and your local public health officials for up to date information and recommendations.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to us if you have any questions or would like to arrange to take your exam online.

NBCMI Directors and Staff
[email protected]

Dear Interpreter Community,

Due to a number of internet scams, the National Board has implemented elevated security measures for the NBCMI Interpreter Registry. The new interface will allow employment agencies to contact interpreters through a secure platform that doesn't disclose your email address.

The email inquiry will originate from: NBCMI Contact Request or [email protected]

As COVID-19 continues to affect us, cyber criminals are creating new scamming and phishing techniques designed to exploit people. When anxiety builds, individuals are caught off guard and can fall prey to email scams promising employment or financial incentives. These scams look very real.


  • An email scam sent to the interpreter's community, using the NBCMI logo and requesting a donation for a member's son in desperate need for help.
  • A job possibility from a pharmaceutical company recruiting interpreters for a job interview. The cybercriminal impersonates a real company and real employees that work for the company. They then ask you to cash a check that is sent as an employment deposit. Once the check is cashed the funds are withdrawn from YOUR bank account.
  • Cyber criminals may send phishing emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), or the World Health Organization (WHO). These organizations will never contact end users asking for personal information such as usernames or passwords.
  • Cyber criminals may send phishing emails claiming to be from insurance companies or healthcare organizations These emails may convince users to login to portals, reset credentials, or divulge other sensitive information. Be vigilant when viewing, responding to, following links, or opening attachments.
  • Cyber criminals may seek to defraud users wishing to donate money by creating fake charity organizations. These fake organizations will claim to assist COVID-19 victims or response efforts.

You may also familiarize yourself with the new security features on the NBCMI registry by visiting:

The National Board and Staff

COVID- 19 Interpreter Resources and Information



Stay alert for free webinars offered by multiple sources including:

Mental Health Resources:

Symptoms Check: