What Exactly Is a Medical Transcriptionist?

A medical transcriptionist is someone who transcribes medical dictations into medical charts for physicians and other medical providers. Medical transcription is a highly specialized field, and they are definitely trained in more than just typing quickly.

There are a couple ways to become a medical transcriptionist, either through work experience, education, certification or a combination of all three.

Some medical practices use part-time transcriptionists, former nurses, medical assistants, medical secretaries or other healthcare professionals as their transcriptionists. These professionals are already skilled in medical terminology and the running of medical practices from their on-the-job experience.

Some medical practices, hospitals, surgery centers, or other healthcare facilities may refer to their medical transcriptionists as medical language specialists, scribes, or healthcare documentation specialists.  They may also edit voice recognition notes and be called a medical transcription editor.

Medical transcription certification?

Medical transcriptionists can go to school to learn the skill as well. There are also many educational institutions, including vocational colleges, community colleges, and distance or online learning programs that cater to a medical transcription certification.

At school, future medical transcriptionists learn anatomy, physiology, medical terminology, pharmacology, diagnostic procedures and treatment assessments in addition to proper writing and grammar usage. They also learn how to avoid legal issues while doing their job. Making sure they are following medical documentation protection standards. Once a student successfully completes the program, they are awarded a medical transcription certificate from the school.

What is a Medical Transcriptionist?

The Association for Healthcare Documentation and Integrity (ADHI – formerly the American Association for Medical Transcription) also offers two options for medical transcription certifications. They offer a Registered Medical Transcriptionist (RMT) certificate and a Certified Medical Transcriptionist (CMT) certificate.

Both of the ADHI certificates require the hopeful medical transcriptionists to pass an exam. To keep their certification they must also either re-test or successfully pass a re-credentialing course every three years. The CMT is the highest certificate a medical transcriptionist can earn. It is the one that requires the most education and work experience.

On the job daily for a medical transcriptionist

Once educated and trained, what does a medical transcriptionist do? They type the dictated reports of doctors or others in the medical field (researchers, consultants, expert witnesses, etc.) To do so they use specialized transcribing equipment that allows them to control the playback of a recording with foot controls while typing the document. They are also trained to use the proper templates to format the different types of medical documentation – History and Physical Exam, Operative Report, Consultation, Discharge Summary, Diagnostic Test Result, Referral Letter, Chart Note, X-Ray Note and more.

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Medical transcriptionists also translate what the doctor says, making it readable and consistent – typing out spoken abbreviations or medical terms, formatting the document so that it is grammatically correct and makes sense (without changing the meaning of the recording,) checking for inconsistencies in the report – all while following Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and other patient confidentiality guidelines or requirements.

Ditto Transcripts is a Denver, Colorado-based medical transcription company that provides fast, accurate and reliable transcription services for hospitals, clinics, facilities and individual practices of all sizes. Call 720-287-3710 today for a free quote, and ask about our free five-day trial. Visit our website for more information about our medical transcription services.

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