FAQ – General

General FAQ

Where do we call to get an interpreter?

Call MAMI Albany, MAMI Syracuse or MAMI Utica. Click the Contact link for contact information. You may also use MAMI’s confidential e-mail, fax or our Go-Fluently web-based system.  (Call for further details on how to access the web-based system.)

How do I determine the language of the patient/client?

There is a “Language Identification Flash Card.” It includes some, but not all MAMI supported languages. We are in the process of adding our other languages to the form. For patients who do not read, or if a language is not listed, please call the MAMI office for assistance.

Does my facility get charged for cancelled appointments?

Only for same day cancellations. For ASL appointments, a cancellation charge applies for appointments cancelled within 48 hours of appointment.

Who pays for interpreting services?

Generally, the facility pays for services. In some cases, the insurance company may pay.

What information does MAMI need in order to provide an interpreter?

  • Your organization’s name, address, your name and phone number.
  • The name, language, (and phone number – if not emergency) of the non-English-speaking individual.
  • The time and location of when and where the interpreter is needed.
  • Request an interpreter (non-emergency) or a translation

How long before an appointment should I schedule an interpreter?

You may schedule an interpreter any time, but MAMI is more likely to have an interpreter available if you make the request at least one day in advance. The earlier you request the interpreter, the better chance you have of getting the interpreter. There is an additional charge for same day requests.

How long does it take an interpreter to get to the site in case of emergency?

Whenever possible, MAMI tries to get an interpreter on-site within half an hour.

What is the billing cycle?

Billing is within two weeks of date on which MAMI receives information documenting appointment.

Can we save if we request back-to-back same language interpretations with the same interpreter?

Yes, MAMI charges by the hour and not by the patient. You may have more than one interpretation within the hour. If you request back-to-back appointments in one language with one interpreter,, we charge for a single block of time.

When do charges begin?

Charges begin at the scheduled time of the appointment or the arrival time of the interpreter — whichever is later, assuming the interpreter arrives within 10 minutes of appointment. (MAMI interpreters are instructed to call the facility if they are delayed and to ask whether the interpreter is still required or if the the facility would like to make other arrangements.)

Do we have to pay for mileage?

MAMI uses the following policy for charging mileage: Based on the office from which the interpreter is dispatched:

* Syracuse Office: One-hour minimum without transportation for appointments within Greater Syracuse (ten miles from the Syracuse Office).  Outside these limits but within Onondaga County:  two-hour minimum without transportation. Beyond the county: two-hour minimum plus transportation (State Rates).

* Utica Office: One-hour minimum without transportation for appointments within Greater Utica (ten miles from the Utica Office).  Outside these limits but within Oneida County:  two-hour minimum without transportation. Beyond the county: two-hour minimum plus transportation (State Rates).

* Albany Office: One-hour minimum without transportation for appointments within Greater Albany (ten miles from the Syracuse Office).  Outside these limits but within Albany County:  two-hour minimum without transportation. Beyond the county: two-hour minimum plus transportation (State Rates).

Whom should we call if an interpreter does not arrive on time?

Call the MAMI office immediately.

Are interpreters trained in HIPAA and confidentiality rules?

Yes. Interpreters follow all interpreter ethics and sign an agreement that they will maintain confidentiality. They are also prepared to sign a document requested by the facility indicating that this is the case.

Does HIPAA require that the facility use trained interpreters?

HIPAA requires that the patient/client know his/her privacy rights. Any interpreter brought in by the patient may not be aware of these rights or may not be able to translate documents that make the patient aware of these rights. Such untrained interpreters are not subject to HIPAA regulations. All MAMI interpreters are trained in HIPAA regulations and are able to accurately provide the information to patients.