Associate of Medical Transcription: Stenoscriptionist Degree Overview
Research associate degrees in medical transcription. Get information on requirements, courses, career prospects and salary to make an informed decision about your education.
A stenoscriptionist is a medical transcriptionist who uses a stenography machine to transcribe medical documents. In this associate's degree program, students can learn how to fit in as part of a medical team and are taught the professional skills needed for medical office work, such as how to format documents, transcribe audio files and edit transcribed pieces. Programs also cover legal and ethical responsibilities and medical terminology.
In addition to transcription skills, programs can also train individuals in medical office practices. Students have the opportunity to learn how to handle insurance paperwork, patient records, office management and customer service. Most programs require some type of supervised fieldwork so that students may practice their new skills. In general, programs only require a high school diploma or equivalent for admission, but some schools may require specific word-per-minute keyboarding skills.
The curriculum of a medical transcription program is designed to provide students with training for entry-level work. Most programs include an internship, so students can practice the medical transcription skills learned in the classroom. Programs usually last two years and include some general education courses in supporting topics, such as business math, communications and behavioral science. Core courses in a program may cover topics including:
- Medical document formatting
- Medical terminology
- Pharmacology terminology
- Voice recognition software
- Word processing
- Medical office procedures
- Medical ethics
- Medical record delivery systems
Popular Career Options
Medical transcription programs usually prepare students to become medical transcriptionists. As transcriptionists, individuals may work in hospitals, private offices, clinics, insurance companies, research facilities, health departments or with independent transcription companies. An associate degree in medical transcription may also prepare graduates for work as:
- Medical receptionist
- Medical office support personnel
- Medical records clerk
- Medical office assistant
Career Outlook and Salary Information
All receptionists could see employment grow, at a rate of about 14%, from 2012 until 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted. Their median salary was $25,990, the BLS noted in May 2012. Medical assistants could see growth of 29%, and their median was $29,370. Health information and medical records technicians were predicted to see a 22% increase in employment. The BLS found their median was $34,160.
Continuing Education Information
While not required, medical transcription certification options are available. The Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) offers two certifications for medical transcriptionists (www.ahdionline.org). The AHDI offers the Registered Medical Transcriptionist (RMT) designation for individuals with less than two years of experience. The AHDI's Certified Medical Transcriptionist designation is available for those with more than two years of experience.
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