The United States medical industry is booming. From 2009 through 2013, hospital deal volume increased 14 percent annually according to The Hospital Acquisition Report 2014, and with the Healthcare Act in full swing, these numbers are set to go higher as time progresses. This means all the stakeholders in the American healthcare industry, be it doctors and nurses, or pharmaceuticals and people occupying support roles like medical transcription will see an increase in volume.
A medical transcriptionist listens to audio recordings created by doctors and other medical professionals, and converts them into a standardized medical report so that they can be entered into the patient’s official medical records. According to Career Step – an institute that provides medical transcription training, medical transcription salaryis between $28,080 and $41,770 a year for the middle 50% of medical transcriptionists. If you want to feature in the higher reaches of that figure, and go beyond, then here’s what you need to know.
5 Attributes a Successful Medical Transcriptionist Must Have
- Speed and efficiency. Getting your work done quickly, and getting your work done well are important prerequisites for a successful career in most jobs, and things holds especially true for medical transcription. So the ability to listen, comprehend, imbibe, and type out what you hear as rapidly as possible will hold you in good stead. Particularly if you’re doing a freelance, work-from-home medical transcriptionist job, where you get paid per transcription, the more you do the more you earn. Even as a full-timer, a reputation for being quick and dependable is the ticket, so make sure you keep honing your listening and typing skills.
- Proficiency in transcription software. There is an IT component involved in the process of medical transcription. Sometimes speech-to-text software is used, playback software is used to aid in the listening of the transcription, and the records need to be transferred wirelessly through the Internet too. And when it comes to technology, the only thing that’s constant is change, so the ability to figure out software and extract the most out of them is paramount, and should be part of every good transcriptionist’s skill-set.
- Proofreading abilities. Errors can prove costly, particularly when someone’s health is at stake, so the ability to proofread your work, detect errors, and rectify them is very, very important. A reputation for work riddled with errors is not one that someone who’s looking to climb up the medical transcription ladder should have. So make sure to keep a beady eye out when looking over your work, and vet it thoroughly before sending it across.
- Familiarity with medical parlance. Because medical transcription is such a niche and specialized career profile, doing your homework in this department is crucial. Doctors will use a lot of technical terminology that might get lost in the process if you aren’t familiar with that terminology and it means. As pointed out in the previous point, errors can lead to catastrophic results, so making sure you can interpret the words the healthcare professional who has made the recording is using is vital to doing a good job.
- Keeping up with changes in medical industry. The medical industry is forever growing. New types of illnesses and treatments keep cropping up. Along with this, changes in medical policy, and most importantly the maintenance of medical records as per required government and industry standards means the awareness levels of medical transcriptionists in terms of the healthcare industry is central to a successful career.
If you adhere to these five guidelines, and go about your work with perseverance and diligence, there’s no reason why you can’t make it big in the field of medical transcription.