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Interpreter Services

Revised: 03-15-2017

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Overview

Interpreter services, as appropriate, may be a covered Individualized Education Program (IEP) service and reimbursed by Minnesota Health Care Programs ( MHCP). Interpreter services are covered when it is necessary to communicate with the child during some covered IEP services or when communication is provided about a specific service when the parent and child are both present.

Authorization and Orders

The IEP team authorizes services included in an IEP or Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). Interpreter services are considered access services and do not require orders from a health care professional.

Spoken Language Interpreter Services

Spoken language interpreters must be actively enrolled with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and identified on the MDH Spoken Language Health Care Interpreter Roster. The district is responsible for ensuring that spoken language interpreters are certified, enrolled with MDH and identified on the roster. Interpreters must be competent and able to provide accurate and quality service.

Competent Spoken Language Interpreters

Spoken language interpreters:

  • • Demonstrate proficiency in both English and the targeted language and have fundamental knowledge of relevant specialized heath terms and concepts in both languages
  • • Use appropriate interpreting mode given the situation (for example, consecutive, simultaneous, or summarizing, or sight translation-reading to oral translation of a document)
  • • Understand their role without deviating into other roles, such as counselor or legal advisor and are sensitive to the child’s culture
  • • Have appropriate training, including instruction in interpreting skills and ethics, confidentiality and data privacy rules
  • Sign Language Interpreter Services

    Review the Sign language interpreter referral or the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf to find an interpreter near your location. DHS provides this information as a public service. DHS does not endorse, certify, or guarantee the communication or services listed or provided by the agencies listed.

    Inclusion on the MDH roster is not evidence that the person is certified as an interpreter.

    Qualified Sign Language Interpreters

    Sign language interpreters demonstrate proficiency in signing, as well as the following:

  • • Understand their role as an interpreter without deviating into other roles, such as counselor or legal advisor and are sensitive to the child’s culture
  • • Have appropriate training, including instruction in interpreting skills and ethics, and confidentiality and data privacy rules
  • Covered Services

    Spoken Language Interpreter Services are covered as follows:

  • • When provided by a competent interpreter who has enrolled with MDH and is listed on the MDH spoken language health care roster.
  • • When provided to a child with limited English proficiency, in conjunction with another covered IEP service when the child, service provider and interpreter are present.
  • • When provided to a parent with limited English proficiency in order to obtain and relay information regarding the child during a covered IEP evaluation or reevaluation. When provided in person or by telephone or teleconference.
  • Sign Language Interpreter Services are covered as follows:

  • • When provided in conjunction with another covered IEP service when a child who is deaf who communicates by signing, a service provider and an interpreter are present.
  • • When provided by a competent sign language interpreter during the course of providing a direct, person-to-person, covered health care service.
  • • When provided to a parent who communicates by signing to obtain and relay information regarding the child during a covered IEP service or evaluation of a child when the child, parent, service provider and interpreter are present at the evaluation or service.
  • • Must be an accurate and quality service provided by a qualified interpreter. DHS encourages the use of certified sign language interpreters.
  • • May be provided by remote video.
  • Note: Refer to the Covered and Noncovered IEP Health-Related Services section of this guide for an overview of covered services and coverage criteria for all IEP services.

    Noncovered Services

    Interpreter Services are not covered:

  • • For scheduling appointments, meetings with a parent, and translating printed materials
  • • When provided by a parent, relative, friend or child.
  • • When provided in conjunction with transportation or PCA services.
  • Note: Refer to the Covered and Noncovered IEP Health-Related Services section of this guide for an overview of noncovered services for all IEP services.

    Health Records and Documentation

    Review the Record Keeping and Documentation section for an overview of the basic IEP record keeping, documentation service time and encounter reporting requirements. For interpreter services, a child’s health record must also include:

  • • A complete copy of the current IEP or IFSP that includes frequency, duration, and scope of all covered IEP services and the individual child’s need for IEP interpreter services.
  • • The child’s name, date of birth, school, date of service, time spent, and the other MA covered IEP service provided with the interpreter service (progress notes are not required for interpreter services).
  • Billing

    Bill only for the face-to-face interpreter services or telephone portion of the oral language interpreter service provided in conjunction with another covered IEP service. The length of time documented for both services should correspond.

    Submit claims using the 837P Professional clam type. Refer to the MN–ITS IEP User Guide for step-by-step instructions for direct data entry claims. Batch billers submitting X12 837P claims, may review the MHCP 5010/D.0 Compliance Web page and the AUC Minnesota Uniform Companion Guide for transaction guideline.

    Use CPT code T1013, no modifier is required. Bill only 1 unit per day, per child. The time and encounter data that is reported by the district to EDRS is calculated to determine an average cost per day.

    Note: Review the Billing and Authorization section of this manual for general billing requirements

    Resources

    Minnesota Department of Health – Interpreter Roster: Spoken Language, Health Care

    Legal Reference

    Minnesota Statutes 144.058 (Interpreter Services Quality Initiative)
    Minnesota Statutes 256B.0625
    subd.18a and 26 (Covered Services)

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    © 2017 Minnesota Department of Human Services Updated: 8/9/17 10:38 AM | Accessibility | Terms/Policy | Contact DHS | Top of Page | Updated: 8/9/17 10:38 AM