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5 Transcription Tips for Medical Virtual Assistants

Medical transcription is the process of converting audio recordings or dictations by physicians and health care professionals into typewritten form. Medical transcription is one of the special skills a medical virtual assistant can perform. It can get a bit overwhelming and challenging for newbies, but certainly gets easier as one gets to practice and perform it often.

Transcription in the medical field is a crucial task. There should be no room for mistakes especially in dealing with major medical terminologies such as in diagnosis, medical procedures, descriptions in assessment, quantity and name of medications among others.

As a medical transcriptionist, you ought to know that your output is valuable to the medical team. It serves as the main basis or report in communicating to the members of the team that treatment has already been given to patient. An accurate report will help in making sure that no unnecessary incidents can happen that may harm the patient such as overdosing and duplicating treatment regimen. It is also important to know that a medical document is also considered legal evidence in legal proceedings. It serves as a proof whether or not the medical team did their part in caring for the patient.

To help you perfect your skills in transcription, here are the tips that may help you:

1. Improve your typing skills. The best way to be efficient in this job is to become a fast typist. But you should also remember that accuracy of your work is more important. So it is best that you only type as fast as you can do it accurately. Having so many corrections to make during proofreading will just take you so long to finish the task.

2. Be a sharp listener. Being a sharp listener is your key in becoming a successful transcriptionist. You need to hear and understand what is being said so that you can transcribe it. Be aware of the factors that may affect your hearing such as your headphone or earphone, speakers, and the background noise. To counter the difficulties in understanding or recognizing the words, be knowledgeable of medical terminologies and familiar with the language including the accent of the speaker.

3. Use the Internet to verify words. If you don’t know the right spelling of the word, look it up. It would be best to pause for a while and verify the word to save time. More likely, you will encounter these terms repeatedly all throughout the recording or dictation.

4. Follow the correct format. Before doing the transcription, it is practical to first know the format preferred by the client. Medical documents have a lot of formats and it can save your time if you start your work using the right format.

5. Proofread your work before sending it back to the client. Isn’t it that professionalism can be measured by the way you do the tasks? And I think there’s no more accurate criterion to gauge professionalism than reflecting accuracy in your work. If possible, have someone else do the final proofreading of your output. A set of fresh eyes can make a great difference!

Medical transcription is a challenging task. It is not just a simple typing job. Good listening skills, good grammar, and expertise of syntax are the major skills required. Complementing these with the tips listed above will definitely make your job as a medical transcriptionist easier and more rewarding.

What are you waiting for? Enhance your skills and services as a medical virtual assistant by performing medical transcription!


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