How to Become a Medical Transcriptionist in Nebraska
Medical transcriptionists are an important part of the healthcare team. Their primary responsibilities involve transcribing audio reports created by physicians and other healthcare providers into official medical documentation. Increasingly, transcriptionists are also becoming responsible for editing documents made using voice recognition software, as the field adapts to updates in technology. For those considering this career choice, a careful eye for detail and good listening and writing skills will be helpful.
The acquisition of certain skills and knowledge will be necessary prior to beginning work in the field. Specifically, medical transcriptionists will need to have a good working knowledge of medical abbreviations, anatomy and physiology, common disease processes, pharmacology, medical terminology and diagnostic procedures. Technologically, transcriptionists will also need to be familiar with word processing software and health information technology. The work requires the use of appropriate reference materials as well as an updated knowledge of all legal and confidentiality requirements.
Regulations in Nebraska for Medical Transcriptionists
Nebraska, like most states, does not require licensure for those working as medical transcriptionists, nor is there a statewide regulatory board for the profession. Those interested in the career will need to acquire a high school diploma or equivalent as well as a certificate from an appropriate training course.
Programs for medical transcription are highly variable and take anywhere from several weeks to two years to complete. Most training programs are offered completely online, although there are still some in-person training programs available.
Training for Medical Transcription for those Living in Nebraska
Although in-person training in Nebraska might be difficult to find, there are plenty of options for online training. A few of these include:
- Southeast Community College offers a six-week online program for medical transcriptionists. The program covers both inpatient and outpatient transcription, going over the nine major report types and their components. Lessons promise to cover grammar review and clinical knowledge. Hands-on practice will be available through sample transcriptions.
- Penn Foster also offers an online training course in medical transcription. Online simulations will be used to develop the necessary skills for both transcription and editing.
- Ashworth College offers training in as little as four months. The program fee includes the certification examination for the Registered Healthcare Documentation Specialist (RHDS) credential through the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI).
Possible Additional Certifications
As mentioned, the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) offers certification for medical transcriptionists. Their Registered Healthcare Documentation Specialist (RHDS) designation is earned by passing an examination consisting of multiple-choice questions, listening exercises and a sample transcription. Obtaining a certification, such as this one, is a great way to stand out in a crowded career field and to highlight your expertise and professionalism to potential employers.
Growth Projections and Wages in Nebraska
While the career field, in general, is experiencing a nationwide decline, Nebraska is expected to experience a small amount of growth in the profession. Specifically, according to Projections Central, a 1.9 percent growth in medical transcription jobs is projected between the years 2016 and 2026. This compares quite favorably to the projected 3.3 percent decline expected nationwide in this field in the same time period.
Salaries in the state also appear somewhat stable, with data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) for the year 2018 showing a mean annual salary of $35,290 for medical transcriptionists in Nebraska. This is only slightly lower than the national mean of $36,350.
Nebraska Opportunities for Medical Transcriptionists
According to the BLS, most medical transcriptionists are employed by business support services, physicians’ offices and hospitals. The career also has significant potential for business ownership and freelance work. A few potential employers in the state include Manpower and Ensign Services.