Display multiple languages in forms


Hi All,

The MSF team is exploring the idea of displaying multiple languages in forms to reflect what currently exists in some paper forms, like the example below with English and Arabic:

In the digital forms of the EMR, users ideally use their preferred single language, but a potential added value of displaying multiple languages would mainly be to 1) ensure the accuracy of translations, 2) reduce potential misinterpretations of questions and answers, and 3) reduce change management.

Is it a use case or interest that some of you might share?

Thank you!

@ball @fanderson @reagan @mksrom @delphinep @jesplana @grace @ludovicrossel @jnsereko


This was a MVP use case a long time ago. One of the reasons we started to include the “caption” in the dictionary in multiple languages was to facilitate automatic translations of the forms. The concepts already were in multiple languages, but the form elements were not. I’d be interested in talking more about how this could work without getting as database-bound as the current Bahmni form approach.

1 Like

In Cambodia I saw paper-based visit notes being written in up to 3 languages on one page.

Some personal or demographic information was written in Khmer. Observations, diagnoses and prescribing in French, English or even a mix of both, depending on where the Doctor had trained.

When users were presented with digital forms in a single language, they wanted to know how to switch between different languages to ensure they understood the question correctly, not something you would expect to need to do mid-consultation.

At the time I noted we should consider how we might present a primary and secondary language option in form labels, values and helper text but it didn’t advance in O3 as yet.

I’m happy to help with this!


Hi @michaelbontyes ,

Would something like a mouse over description work? We have this in our OpenMRS 2.0 instance. Maybe instead of having the (i) info icon, we could have the country flag and when the users put their mouse over the flag, it gives the translation: mouse_over_info

cc: @delphinep @frederic.deniger