Medical Transcription continues to play a major part in international outsourcing, serving the business needs of clients around the globe and the economic needs of the communities in which medical transcriptionists work and live. Medical transcription pays well, it's interesting and challenging. The fact that a medical transcriptionist is responsible for the quality of life of both the doctor and the patient makes it a rewarding career choice.
Briefly, here's how it works: Patient Health Records (PHRs) are dictated by the doctors, their assistants, nurses, or secretaries, stored on tapes, or digital audio recorders and transmitted to the transcriptionists who convert the audio files into text documents. The people who undertake the transcribing are called medical transcriptionists (MT) or medical language specialists (MLS). These records could be clinic, office, operative or consultation notes, discharge summaries, etc. The transcribed documents undergo different levels of quality check and proof-reading to ascertain 98% accuracy before they are uploaded to the doctor's office/clinics.
The business of healthcare in the United States is closely connected to insurance providers. This puts an increasing stress on healthcare documentation for the purpose of settling insurance claims. Due to this high requirement of procedural fulfillments, the demand for medical transcriptionists is very high.
However, the increasing demand on these resources needs to balance with low cost and this is often not the case. Factors like salary and infrastructure costs are high in the US. This is where India, a country with abundant, educated English-speakers, plugs the gap and stabilizes the "buy-sell" relationship. Add computer literacy to language proficiency, easy availability of manpower at highly cost-effective rates and you have a winning pitch making India the preferred location for medical transcription. Also, the difference in time zones between the two countries ensures prompt adherence to the turnaround times requested by the clients. Not only the US, but the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia outsource their transcription and follow the philosophy of getting it done at a fraction of the cost regardless of the location of the provider.
There is a lot of emphasis on the aspect of training in medical transcription. It is a prime necessity to get the transcriptionists acclimated with the language of medicine or LOM. Fluency in English with the understanding of American, British, Australian and other accents and idiom is required. A thorough knowledge of the AAMT (American Association for Medical Transcription) rules is also needed.
Many big business names in the metro areas and major cities of India have ventured into MT and are flourishing. Most of these companies have in-house training programs so that the trainees are assured of a job at the end of their course. An MT always draws base pay per month after his or her training period and receives additional incentives based on performance in the areas of line-count and the accuracy. In India, there are many home-based transcriptionists. The flexible working hours give the transcriptionists the ability to work at their own pace throughout the day. Housewives, retirees and disabled people who may encounter difficulties traveling to a traditional office are wonderful candidates for medical transcription careers.
The most important aspect for the industry to thrive and survive is the level of education in the providing market. More emphasis on quality will help expand the arena of outsourcing. Alternate sources of employment are also on the rise in India. All the above paint a positive picture of international growth and aspiration.