Translation services are essential to providing culturally competent care because they are key to communication when the clinician and the patient do not speak the same language. Evidence shows that professional translation services are associated with improved patient satisfaction and adherence, as well as improved provider satisfaction (2). For these reasons, clinicians should use professional translators and should consider them to be essential participants in clinical encounters with patients who do not speak the same language. We should not rely on volunteers, who are often family members, friends, or untrained support staff, because this is not consistent with best practices for culturally competent care. Unfortunately, payers do not reimburse for interpretive services, but this shortsightedness does not absolve clinicians of the professional responsibility to provide them. The ACP has taken a strong and commendable position on reimbursement of translation services, especially for Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). To make progress on its agenda for racial and ethnic disparities, the College must place this issue at the top of its policy agenda. Effective communication is a prerequisite for high-quality care.