About Bridging the Gap

Bridging the Gap (BTG) medical interpreter training was the first 40-hour training program of its kind and continues to be a pioneer in this field. Bridging the Gap set the standard on how to best train individuals to be professional medical interpreters, a legacy that we are proud of and that we seek to grow every day.

BTG is taught in English and is open to bilingual speakers of all languages. No medical interpreting experience is required! BTG will prepare you with the foundational skills and specialized information to become an effective, competent, and professional medical interpreter. We offer a 40-hour and a 64-hour BTG course.

Do you want to attain national certification as a medical interpreter? The BTG 40- and 64-hour courses qualify as prerequisites for the national certifications provided by the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI) and the Certification Commission for Health Care Interpreters (CCHI).

What You Learn

Learn the necessary skills and best practices to become a qualified medical interpreter through lecture-based lessons, interactive role plays, case studies, and group discussions. At the end of the course, participants receive a signed and individually numbered certificate of successful completion after passing the final exam with a score of 70% or higher. This certificate does not expire and is widely accepted across the country as the gold standard for medical interpreter training. You will also receive a copy of our Bridging the Gap textbook, a bilingual medical glossary, and either a mental health glossary (for the 64-hour BTG course) or a Guide to Common Medications (for the 40-hour BTG).

Among the topics you’ll learn are:

  • Basic interpreting skills
  • Interpreter roles
  • Codes of ethics for medical interpreters
  • Integrated medical terminology, anatomy, and physiology
  • The United States health care system
  • The role of culture in interpreting
  • Communication skills for advocacy
  • Professional development

Ask us about the 64-hour BTG course that includes interpreting in mental health and considerations for interpreting for LGBTQIA communities. Our 64-hour course also addresses health disparities and includes additional medical terminology. Oregon requires at least 60 hours of formal health care interpreter training to become a certified health care interpreter in that state. Our 64-hour BTG  training program is approved by the Oregon Health Authority as a prerequisite to becoming a qualified or certified health care interpreter in the state of Oregon.

Who Should Apply

College or Grad Students

Bilingual college or university students with a passion for languages and serving their community will love this interactive course. Working as an interpreter is an excellent part time, flexible job.

Health Care or Human Services Professionals

For those working in – or planning to work in – health care or in human services, medical interpreter training can enhance your skills and engagement with your patients or clients.

Life-Long Learners

If you are a bilingual retiree or interested in pursuing a new career, medical interpreting allows you to have a flexible work schedule and achieve your goal of giving back to your community.


  • Applicants must be able to attend all 40 or 64 hours of training.
  • Be 18 years of age or older.
  • Have a high school diploma, GED certificate, or university/college degree. This will also count as proof of proficiency in the language spoken at the institution you have a degree from.
  • Have or obtain proof of language proficiency in English and one other language that you will be interpreting in. Please refer to the application form for a list of acceptable documents.
  • Submit a completed application packet.

If you don’t have proof of language proficiency, you will need to take an over-the-phone language assessment. In order for us to schedule this for you, you must first pay the $150 non refundable deposit for the course. If you don’t pass the language assessment test, your deposit can be used for a different BTG class within one year. To pay the deposit, CCHCP staff will send you an invoice for the deposit after receiving your application.

To submit your application materials and documents, or to send us your questions about course requirements and the application process, please email us at bridgingthegap@xculture.org or call us at 206.860.0329, ext. 1236.

Each of our BTG classes is limited to 15 participants. Apply soon!

Upcoming Classes

Bridging the Gap 40-Hour Training

Mar 7-18, 2022
9:00 am - 1:00 pm PT

Online via Zoom
Monday – Friday

Early Bird Application Deadline ($50 off): January 31st
Application Deadline: February 7, 2022
Payment Deadline: February 16, 2022
Cost: $750

Application Form

Bridging the Gap 64-Hour Training

Jun 6-24, 2022
9:00 am - 1:00 pm PT

*Hybrid Training: online & in-person
Monday – Friday

Early Bird Application Deadline (Receive $50 off): May 2, 2022
Application Deadline: May 9, 2022
Payment Deadline: May 18, 2022
Cost: $875

Application Form

*June 23-24 are in-person from 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM PT in Seattle, WA

Bridging the Gap 40-Hour Training

Jul 12-22, 2022
9:00 am - 1:00 pm PT

*Hybrid Training: online & in-person
Monday – Friday

Early Bird Application Deadline (Receive $50 off): June 6, 2022
Application Deadline: June 14, 2022
Payment Deadline: June 24, 2022
Cost: $750

Application Form

*July 22 is in-person from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM PT in Seattle, WA

BTG Scholarships

We plan to offer two scholarships in 2021 for our summer and fall BTG courses. For more information, visit our Scholarships page.

For more information, email us:


Thank you for teaching me new medical interpreting skills and ethics these past two weeks. I had a lot of fun and I learned a lot! The Cross Cultural Health Care Program is a truly inspirational organization, and I continue to believe strongly in its mission!


Hospital Staff in Washington state