English as a Lingua Franca in Public Health Care Services The Spanish Challenge

Sonia Oliver (1)
(1) Autonomous University of Barcelona Department of English and German Philology , Spain


Throughout the last few decades, English has become the lingua franca for professionals in many fields. However, within the framework of health services in Spain, English does not seem to work as the main vehicle of communication among providers and users. Therefore, the goal of this study is to shed light into how and why certain categorization of languages frequently emerge and circulate in public health institutions. In this sense, our method is based on ethnographic fieldwork and includes 10 interviews with key members of one Health Care Unit for women. Our results seem to corroborate that medical discourses work at institutional, professional, and moral levels and that the way the Institution supports or prioritizes English, in particular, unfolds certain linguistic hierarchies underlying governmental policies as it is made more accessible and considered “better” by medical professionals and staff.

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Sonia Oliver
(Primary Contact)
Author Biography

Sonia Oliver, Autonomous University of Barcelona Department of English and German Philology

Head of Unit at the Faculty of Education from the Department of English and German Philology in the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Degree in Anglo-German Philology (University of Barcelona, 1992). Phd in Translation and Interpreting (University Pompeu Fabra, 2004). Coordinator of Masters Modules (Practicum, Masters Thesis, Advanced Academic Abilities) and teaching ESP and EAP for the last 14 years. Dr Sonia Oliver does active research in digital literacies, intercultural communication, EAP&ESP, contrastive rhetoric and corpus linguistics

Oliver, S. (2015). English as a Lingua Franca in Public Health Care Services The Spanish Challenge. Journal of Intercultural Communication, 15(3), 1–10. https://doi.org/10.36923/jicc.v15i3.705

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