Trends in Medical Transcription

The field of medical transcription, like any other field, is expected to be influenced by growing trends as it moves toward the future. According to PR Leap, developments in technology and pricing, as well as an increased focus on quality of transcription, are among the trends directing the transcription field today.


The development and growing acceptance of speech recognition technology is one such trend, as more hospitals turn to the automatic voice-capture technology to do the heavy lifting in medical transcription. This will by no means endanger the industry, however, as it creates a need for back-end editing and proofreading, and there is no shortage of documents needing to be transcribed. It is also expected to cause an increase in productivity.


Medical transcriptionists have typically been paid by the line, which has led to some irregularity over what constitutes a typed line. Some companies count 65 character lines, while others count 60 characters, 70 characters, or other numbers. The result is the need for pricing negotiations whenever a transcription company wants to work with a new client, which creates a strain on client-transcriber relations.

One proposed solution to this problem is the introduction of a standard unit of measure called the Visual Black Character (VBC), which is basically defined as a typed character that can be seen with the naked eye. This trend, plus developments in pricing transparency (such as the ability to track transcription production and reconcile invoices) would lessen billing complications between transcription companies and their clients, as well as improve business relations.

Quality transcription

Another trend in medical transcription is the shift toward quality transcription over high turnover. Hospitals have demonstrated that they are willing to pay more for higher-quality documents, while transcription companies have taken measures to improve their quality through more editing and proofing, transcriptionist coaching, greater supervision over transcriptionists’ work, and more communication with clients over what they expect of transcriptionists.

These trends have so far made medical transcription a more efficient and smoother process for both client and transcriptionist. Do you know of any other trends and how they have affected the medical transcription industry?

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