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How do I Begin a Medical Transcription Career?

By K T Solis
Updated May 17, 2024
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A medical transcriptionist listens to verbally recorded reports doctors make regarding their patients. The recorded information consists of a variety of patient information, including symptoms, treatments, medical condition, and other pertinent data. It is the transcriptionist's job to transfer this information into typewritten form. In order to begin a medical transcription career, a person must receive training from a reputable medical transcription program. This training can be provided through distance education, community colleges, or vocational schools.

Those who wish to embark on a medical transcription career will spend their days listening to doctors' reports. Recordings are transmitted through digital, analog, or Internet methods. The medical transcriptionist wears a headset to listen to the physician's recordings.

When he or she needs to pause the recording, the transcriptionist uses a special foot pedal. Medical transcriptions enter this information into the computer, using their knowledge of medical terminology to transcribe accurate information. They must be fast typists and feel comfortable using computers as they perform their duties.

If someone wishes to have a medical transcription career, he or she must possess knowledge of other subjects as well. For example, medical transcriptionists must have a thorough knowledge of human anatomy, medical treatments, medical procedures, and pharmacology. Schools that teach medical transcription may require students successfully complete classes in grammar as well.

Someone who chooses a medical transcription career can expect to work in a variety of settings. Many medical transcriptionists work from home. Other transcriptionists may work in hospitals, doctors' offices, medical clinics, transcription service offices, or other health care facilities. The majority of employers prefer that their medical transcriptionists hold an associate degree or complete a one-year diploma program.

A good transcriptionist is fast and accurate. Accuracy when transcribing doctors' reports is imperative since this information is sent to a patient's medical file. If the transcribed information contains inaccuracies, the health of the patient may be adversely affected.

Medical transcription is a career field suited for people who are detail-oriented. Medical transcriptionists are committed to maintaining confidentiality since they deal with sensitive, personal information on a daily basis. They also must feel comfortable using technology because they use various types of equipment to perform their important work.

Many companies prefer to hire medical transcriptionists who already possess a few years of experience. On the other hand, some companies are willing to work with new graduates who are seeking entry-level positions in the medical transcription field. When seeking a school that offers a medical transcription program, future medical transcription students should choose one that is approved by the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI).

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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