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Summary Report for:
31-9094.00 - Medical Transcriptionists

Transcribe medical reports recorded by physicians and other healthcare practitioners using various electronic devices, covering office visits, emergency room visits, diagnostic imaging studies, operations, chart reviews, and final summaries. Transcribe dictated reports and translate abbreviations into fully understandable form. Edit as necessary and return reports in either printed or electronic form for review and signature, or correction.

Sample of reported job titles: Clinical Medical Transcriptionist, Documentation Specialist, Medical Language Specialist, Medical Secretary, Medical Transcriber, Medical Transcription, Medical Transcription Supervisor, Medical Transcriptionist, Radiology Transcriptionist, Transcriptionist

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Tasks  |  Tools & Technology  |  Knowledge  |  Skills  |  Abilities  |  Work Activities  |  Detailed Work Activities  |  Work Context  |  Job Zone  |  Education  |  Credentials  |  Interests  |  Work Styles  |  Work Values  |  Related Occupations  |  Wages & Employment  |  Job Openings  |  Additional Information

Tasks

  • Take dictation using shorthand, a stenotype machine, or headsets and transcribing machines. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Return dictated reports in printed or electronic form for physician's review, signature, and corrections and for inclusion in patients' medical records. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Review and edit transcribed reports or dictated material for spelling, grammar, clarity, consistency, and proper medical terminology. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Transcribe dictation for a variety of medical reports, such as patient histories, physical examinations, emergency room visits, operations, chart reviews, consultation, or discharge summaries. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Distinguish between homonyms and recognize inconsistencies and mistakes in medical terms, referring to dictionaries, drug references, and other sources on anatomy, physiology, and medicine. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Translate medical jargon and abbreviations into their expanded forms to ensure the accuracy of patient and health care facility records. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Produce medical reports, correspondence, records, patient-care information, statistics, medical research, and administrative material. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Identify mistakes in reports and check with doctors to obtain the correct information. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Perform data entry and data retrieval services, providing data for inclusion in medical records and for transmission to physicians. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Set up and maintain medical files and databases, including records such as x-ray, lab, and procedure reports, medical histories, diagnostic workups, admission and discharge summaries, and clinical resumes. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Perform a variety of clerical and office tasks, such as handling incoming and outgoing mail, completing and submitting insurance claims, typing, filing, and operating office machines. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Receive patients, schedule appointments, and maintain patient records. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Answer inquiries concerning the progress of medical cases, within the limits of confidentiality laws. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Decide which information should be included or excluded in reports. See more occupations related to this task.
  • Receive and screen telephone calls and visitors. See more occupations related to this task.

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Tools & Technology

Tools used in this occupation:

  • Desktop computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Dictation machines — Desktop transcribers; Dictaphones; Transcribing equipment See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Franking or postage machines — Postage meters See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Laser fax machine — Laser facsimile machines See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Laser printers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Notebook computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Personal computers See more occupations related to this tool.
  • Special purpose telephones — Multi-line telephone systems See more occupations related to this tool.

Technology used in this occupation:

  • Accounting software — Patient billing software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Calendar and scheduling software — Calendar software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Data base user interface and query software — Database software; dBASE Plus See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Desktop communications software — Sylvan Software DropChute Pro See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Electronic mail software — Email software; Microsoft Outlook See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Information retrieval or search software — Medical terminology databases See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Internet browser software — Web browser software See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Medical software — MedQuist DocQment Enterprise Platform; Misys Healthcare Systems software; PCC EHR; SpectraMedi EasyFlow (see all 7 examples) See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Spell checkers — Spellex AccuCount; Sylvan Software Complete Medical Pharmaceutical Spell Checker See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Voice recognition software — Crescendo Systems DigiScribe-XL; g-net solutions MTP; Nuance Dragon NaturallySpeaking Medical See more occupations related to this technology.
  • Word processing software — Corel WordPerfect software; Microsoft Word; SpeedUp Trans *; Sylvan Software ShortCut (see all 10 examples) See more occupations related to this technology.

* Software developed by a government agency and/or distributed as freeware or shareware.

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Knowledge

  • Clerical — Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming. See more occupations related to this knowledge.
  • Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures. See more occupations related to this knowledge.

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Skills

  • Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Time Management — Managing one's own time and the time of others. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Judgment and Decision Making — Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Monitoring — Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action. See more occupations related to this skill.
  • Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively. See more occupations related to this skill.

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Abilities

  • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Written Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Finger Dexterity — The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations). See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Perceptual Speed — The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object. See more occupations related to this ability.
  • Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted. See more occupations related to this ability.

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Work Activities

  • Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Documenting/Recording Information — Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Detailed Work Activities

  • Perform clerical work in medical settings. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Maintain medical records. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Prepare medical reports or documents. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Record vital statistics or other health information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Process medical billing information. See more occupations related to this activity.
  • Schedule patient procedures or appointments. See more occupations related to this activity.

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Work Context

  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 89% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 89% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Sitting — 80% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Time Pressure — 73% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 88% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 81% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 53% responded “A lot of freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 74% responded “Continually or almost continually.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 59% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 40% responded “Some freedom.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 50% responded “Extremely important.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Contact With Others — 47% responded “Constant contact with others.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Letters and Memos — 48% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Telephone — 39% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Duration of Typical Work Week — 58% responded “40 hours.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Electronic Mail — 60% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 40% responded “Every day.” See more occupations related to this work context.

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Job Zone

Title Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed
Education Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.
Related Experience Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.
Job Training Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
Job Zone Examples These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include food service managers, electricians, agricultural technicians, legal secretaries, occupational therapy assistants, and medical assistants.
SVP Range (6.0 to < 7.0)

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Education


Percentage of Respondents
Education Level Required
56   Post-secondary certificate Help
26   Some college, no degree
11   High school diploma or equivalent Help

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Credentials

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Interests

Interest code: CR

  • Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow. See more occupations related to this interest.
  • Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others. See more occupations related to this interest.

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Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles. See more occupations related to this work style.
  • Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations. See more occupations related to this work style.

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Work Values

  • Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service. See more occupations related to this work value.
  • Achievement — Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement. See more occupations related to this work value.

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Related Occupations

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Wages & Employment Trends

Median wages (2014) $16.71 hourly, $34,750 annual
State wages Local Salary Info
 
Employment (2012) 84,000 employees
Projected growth (2012-2022) Average (8% to 14%) Average (8% to 14%)
Projected job openings (2012-2022) 22,400
State trends Employment Trends
 
Top industries (2012)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data external site and 2012-2022 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

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Sources of Additional Information

Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.

  • Medical Transcriptionists external site. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.

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