Cancer information in other languages and formats

Find out where you can get information in your own language, or preferred format, and how Ѳ’s can help.

Cancer information in other languages and formats

You may be looking for cancer information in another language or format for yourself, or someone you know with a cancer diagnosis. It can be a worrying time and you may have questions and concerns.

Other languages

You may manage well when speaking and understanding English. However, medical conversations can sometimes be challenging. It’s important that you understand the information you’re given about your diagnosis and possible treatments. You can then ask questions and take an active role in your treatment discussions.

Many people ask a friend or family member to interpret for them.  Whilst this is understandable, it isn’t recommended.  When you’re relying on friends and family they may not always translate accurately, or they may be worried about upsetting you. It could be stressful for you too, if the family member (particularly a child) would not usually discuss personal information with you.

Letting your doctor and healthcare team know that you will need information and support in your language, will help them provide what you need.  Many GP surgeries and hospitals have access to language helplines, which offer translation and interpretation services.   

Most hospitals have cancer information points - where you can access information in several different languages. Your specialist nurse, doctor or clinic staff may provide written information in your own language too.

Cancer websites and charities often provide a range of online information and downloadable booklets in other languages. There are websites and helplines which focus on specific cancer types. They usually include links to information in several languages and formats. It is worth contacting them to see if they can help. 

You can drop into your local Ѳ’s centre for information booklets or printed information from lots of organisations.

For basic information many people find ‘’ helpful as it instantly translate words, phrases and web pages, in over a hundred different languages. Although very useful the translations may not always be completely accurate so don’t rely on this alone for medical  information. 

Other formats

There is information available in other formats too.  It may be that you need cancer information for someone visually impaired, for example. It can be helpful to access information in larger font, braille, or in an audio format.  

Cancer charities often have a range of information covering special and intellectual needs, and visual impairment. (You may prefer information in braille, or audio format).

With total hearing loss you may prefer to have a sign language interpreter present. Hospitals, GP surgeries and clinics can arrange this, although they would need prior notice. Let the health teams know if you will need information in other formats, so they can access this for you beforehand.

How Ѳ’s can help

If you drop into your local Ѳ’s centre, you can ask for advice about accessing information in other languages or formats . We may have the written information you require or can guide you to the websites and booklets or books you need.  You’ll be warmly welcomed, and can find out the range of workshops, courses and support that we provide.

You will find useful links to general cancer websites which provides information in different language formats at the bottom of this page.

What now?

Ask your health care team for an interpreter for clinic appointments. Do this in advance as it may take time to arrange an interpreter.

Call into Ѳ’s and our cancer support specialists can help you to access information in your language

Have a look at the links below  to find further sources of cancer information in other countries, languages and formats.

Last review: Dec 2021 | Next review: Dec 2022

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