MEDICAL TRANSCRIPTIONISTS interpret and transcribe letters, patient care reports, and other dictation by doctors and healthcare professionals. Dictation may include pathology and radiology reports, and discharge summaries, and patient histories, examinations, and progress reports. Medical transcriptionists type from voice recordings that they listen to through earphones. While a variety of equipment is used, most transcriptionists do their work on computers. Medical transcriptionists must understand the language of medicine, anatomy and physiology, and diagnostic procedures and treatment. These reports then become a part of a patient's permanent file.
Salary, Size & Growth
- $35,500 average per year ($17.00 per hour)
- A medium occupation (78,800 workers in 2010)
- Expected to grow moderately (1.1% per year)
Employers prefer to hire MEDICAL TRANSCRIPTIONISTS who have completed post-secondary training in medical transcription, offered by many vocational schools and community colleges. Completion of a two-year associate program that includes coursework in anatomy, medical terminology, medical-legal issues, and English grammar and punctuation, is highly recommended. Many of these programs include supervised on-the-job experience. Courses in computer applications, business communications, and keyboarding may also be included in some programs.