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The Future of Medical Transcription

SyberScribe AUTHOR: SyberScribe, March 7th, 2019

Will medical transcriptionists be replaced by voice recognition systems? Computers are great, but they can’t do everything a human being can. A human is much more reliable than a computer, and when you’re talking medical transcripts, reliability is everything!

If you’re thinking about working as a medical transcriptionist, here’s what you need to know about the future of medical transcription.

What is medical transcription and why is it important?

Medical transcription is the process of listening, interpreting, typing, and formalising medical recordings. But it’s not just about transcribing, it’s also about editing voice recognition draft reports and proofreading the reports. This is all done by a medical transcriptionist who possesses skills and knowledge in medical lexicon, anatomy, physiology, language, grammar, and word-processing programs. It’s their job to ensure that medical records are accurate.

The importance of accuracy is what makes medical transcriptionists valuable. Voice recognition software can be used for medical transcription, but many mistakes can be made when the voice is speaking complex medical terms. Many words sound similar and doctors sometimes make mistakes in their speech. A medical transcriptionist will be able to catch both these vocal errors and any typed errors created by voice recognition programs.

What’s more, medical transcription benefits the medical industry in many ways. It helps management to process the bills and do other work, and it helps the physician, patient and insurance company to understand the treatment given and other diagnoses. Plus, a medical transcriptionist can efficiently translate the transcription content in the language required.

Medical transcription trends

The future of medical transcription looks bright, but if you want to stay updated and ahead of your competitors, you must embrace the changes in the market and follow the trends.

Here are the top three trends to follow this year and onwards:

1. Advances in technology

There have been several advancements in healthcare technology and systems, including:

  • Advanced voice recognition software – With voice recognition systems growing more intelligent, doctors are now dictating medical reports directly to a software on a computer instead of to a transcriptionist. Despite being sophisticated, the software can still make errors when translating medical vernacular and only a transcriptionist can pick up on these errors.
  • New electronic health record (EHR) system – With the new EHR system, transcriptionists will have to stick to a ‘structured data’ format, which is a series of point-and-click fields, pull down menus, structured templates, and macros. This system will create a uniform method of maintaining digital records that’ll help streamline medicinal record information and help create a level plane in the health record world.
  • Seamless connectivity and automation in the healthcare sector – There are new technologies that allow for seamless connectivity, which help to record and upload data to the central database for the physician to use. In turn, this helps the transcriptionist to automate the information flow between different platforms and staff members. The automation of healthcare services will help to provide superior, safer, and quality service to patients.
  • Adoption of advanced reporting techniques – There’s an increasing adoption of web-based services and automatic devices for transcribing, which is expected to replace analogue transcribing devices like recorders. There’s also a rising adoption of electric consoles, word processors, and devices with in-built speech recognition and memory storage systems that are important for outsourcing medical transcription services.
  • Enhanced secure process networks – With medical transcription now becoming mobile and can be performed using mobile phones and tablets, enhanced secure process networks ensure the security of the data.

2. Increase in outsourcing

There’s a growing trend in both overseas and domestic medical transcription outsourcing. Overseas transcribers are being employed to create transcriptions in order to save on costs, while domestic transcribers are needed to fix medical reports that don’t comply with national standards. Additionally, more companies are outsourcing medical transcription services to reliable third-party service providers.

The increase in outsourcing is mainly due to the following reasons:

  • It significantly cuts hiring and equipment costs.
  • Internet-based technologies allow access to transcriptionists around the world.
  • There are more skilled transcriptionists and third-party service providers that can efficiently perform the tasks required of them.
  • A globalised medical transcription workforce features extreme quality control protocol set ups, ensuring the client is happy.

3. Growth in the market

The advances in technology and increase in outsourcing are driving growth in the medical transcription market. In particular, they’ve led to a rise in the value of skilled medical transcriptionists and in the number of third-party service providers and new emerging markets.

Trained personnel are beneficial for medical transcription outsourcing so the demand for them will continue to rise. You can expect to find transcribers who’ve had years of training to learn different methodologies and scientific terminologies, making them very useful in the medical transcription field.

On the other hand, the number of third-party service providers are expected to double in the future as more companies focus on outsourcing medical transcription services to reliable third-party service providers. There’s also a lot of new markets emerging in various parts of the world, which have skilled and trained personnel who can handle medical transcription with ease. Healthy competition in the market will help to improve service quality and increase the value of experienced transcribers.

So what does the future hold for medical transcription?

Medical transcriptionists are here to stay. Doctors may use voice recognition systems for transcribing medical reports because it’s easier and faster, but they need accuracy in their reports and they don’t have time to edit and proofread reports they create on a computer. Provided you have the skills and knowledge, you can protect your future as a medical transcriptionist as the need will always be there.

Moreover, people tend to live longer these days. The more older people there are, the more doctor visits there’ll be, and more reports need to be dictated. Patient demand will continue to fuel the medical transcription field for many years to come.

SyberScribe is a leading provider of transcription services to the medical industry. We offer rapid turnaround times and accurate transcriptions through our state-of-the-art transcription platform. If you’re ready to take the plunge, why not check out the SyberScribe jobs page for more information on starting work as a medical transcriptionist.