Medical transcription is one of the numerous branches of the medical industry. The simplest method of listing down the responsibilities a medical transcriptionist needs to do is by saying that they transcribe the text given by a medical expert, in order to place it in the patients’ files. It requires professional transcribers to convert the verbally dictated prognosis or text, usually narrated by a doctor, to written or typed words. By typing out the verbal notes of the doctors, medical transcriptionists make it easy for everyone to understand the progress on a patient’s file, without having to access the audio records.
Additionally, medical transcriptionists may also be required to break down the details provided in the form of graphs or other reports, by transcribing them, as well. For transcribing the data they receive from medical experts, transcribers utilize tools and software, designed specifically for the purpose. One of the most recommended and commonly used transcription devices is the foot pedal and headphone set, which facilitates the transcribers in carrying out their transcription job much more efficiently. With the help of the foot pedal, they can easily start and stop the recordings, as and when they please.
Medical Transcription Training and Education Requirements
While medical transcription degrees are offered by a large number of educational institutions, not everyone who graduates with the degree can be considered as an expert in medical transcription.
When an individual graduates with a training degree in medical transcription, becoming a registered medical transcriptionist (RMT) is the first step he or she takes. After getting the RMT qualification on their resume, individuals can work for a period of three years. However, after the initial three-year period is over, they need to reappear for an RMT exam. As an alternative, they can earn their credentials back by completing a re-credential course in RMT during the last 6 months of the initial three-year credential period they had.
With the need for healthcare experts growing in the medical industry, the medical transcriptionist job opportunities are also on the rise. However, with the fierce competition among individuals, who step into different medical fields every year, healthcare facilities have been very selective about which workers they choose to be a part of their team. One of the most pressing criteria, in order to make a career in medical transcription, is to clear the certification exam for the discipline. Even though, attaining the medical transcription certification is not compulsory to land a job, but it is a known and proven fact that health facilities everywhere prefer to hire individuals, who are certified to be professional medical transcriptionists.
A certified medical transcriptionist, or CMT, is an individual who has acquired a higher level of credentials than the RMT. In other words, this credential level is a step ahead of RMT. An RMT can decide to become a CMT by appearing for the exam. Consequently, the individual will be following the credential retake timeline as proposed for the CMT exam. As a CMT, individuals need to acquire a minimum of 30 continuous academic credits. Among these, 24 credits have to be in the areas that principally govern medical transcription like IT, software and equipment for medical transcribing, medicinal knowledge and workplace management. Knowledge of medical vocabulary and outstanding comprehension skills are a bonus for any person looking to become a certified medical transcriber.
The certification exam for medical transcription graduates is held under the supervision of American Association of Medical Transcription, or AAMT. To sign up for the certification exam, individuals need to have a minimum of two years of working experience as a medical transcriptionist. Although the test is held a number of times during the year, an individual is eligible to appear for it only twice in one year. Following the completion of enrolment prerequisites, the test can be taken in the exam centers designated by the AAMT.
Medical Transcriptionist Salary And Wages
The annual median salary of medical transcriptionists has been quoted to be around $40,000 by a number of sources. The amount may vary considerably based on the individual’s own capability and command as a medical transcriber. As per the figures provided back in the year 2004, medical transcriptionists can make an hourly amount of around $13.64. In recent times, there is a rising number of clients, who work as freelancers and pick up a project to work on, charging the project managers per project rather than the hourly rate.
Medical Transcriptionist Professional Associations
There are a number of professional associations, which provide affiliations to qualified medical transcriptionists. The most prominent among them is the American Association of Medical Transcription (AAMT), which is also certification providing association. Individuals may also choose to form affiliations with American Transcription Association (ATA), Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) and American Health Management Information Association (AHIMA).