Medical Spanish Program

In 2016, the Latino Student Medical Association (LMSA) at Washington University School of Medicine created a new four-year longitudinal curriculum for advanced Spanish speakers to become certified and practice as bilingual providers.

All students are welcome to participate in some or all of the activities listed below.


With the completion of these requirements, students will receive a notation in their Dean’s Letter to residencies that they have completed the longitudinal curriculum and certified as a bilingual provider.

Please notify the LMSA education chair of your participation in these activities as they occur so LMSA can track your progress through the longitudinal curriculum.

Year One

Pass both of the following courses:

  • The Advanced Medical Spanish 1 selective, offered in the fall as a clinical credit, deals mainly with the history and physical exam.
  • The Advanced Medical Spanish 2 selective, offered in the spring as a humanities credit, focuses on sociocultural factors affecting Latino populations in the United States.

Year Two

Do at least one of the following:

  • Serve as a TA for the Advanced Medical Spanish 1 and 2 selectives. You should be a primary TA for at least 2 sessions per semester.
  • Be a coordinator for the MedSpan student group to organize charlas and Spanish SP sessions.
  • Run the “Spanish On Call” program for the Saturday Neighborhood Health Clinic (SNHC), in which students are assigned to be on call for the SNHC each Saturday that the clinic is open, so that the student can serve as an interpreter over the phone for any Spanish-speaking patients.

AND attend the following:

  • Participate in a volunteer event – El Torito or other LMSA-sponsored community health screenings and fairs, or volunteer with Casa de Salud (note Casa de Salud has its own application process)
  • Attend one SP session each semester
  • Attend one “Grand Rounds” case presentation each semester

Year Three

Before you begin third year, take the Clinician Cultural and Linguistic Assessment (CCLA) phone exam in order to be certified as a bilingual provider. Contact Dr. Yumi Turmelle to arrange your exam.

During your rotations, let your attendings know that you are certified to provide care in Spanish so that they can preferentially assign you to Spanish-speaking patients when available. A family medicine rotation at Casa de Salud is offered that will be conducted majority in Spanish.

Year Four

Do an away rotation with Casa de Salud, Universidad de Puerto Rico, or another institution that is dedicated to providing care to mainly Spanish-speaking patients.

Medical Spanish 4 Year Curriculum (PDF)


LMSA Education Chair
Kate Douglas 

LMSA Medical Spanish Program Advisor
Dr. Yumi Turmelle