Monthly Archive for: ‘January, 2014’

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Accuracy and quality most important attributes of MTSOs, survey reveals

Silent Type recently surveyed HIM leaders in our service area, both from our client hospitals and from hospitals who used other transcription companies. Our goal was to see how opinions and attitudes about transcription services may be changing. The results show some interesting trends.

Our researchers asked HIM leaders what attribute they thought distinguished their medical transcription service organizations (MTSOs). Their answer, most often, was turnaround time. About one-third (36 percent) of our survey respondents said quick turnaround was their MTSO’s most distinguishing feature. The next highest attributes mentioned were accuracy (18 percent) and efficiency (14 percent). Other attributes mentioned included dependability, quality, service, accessibility and caring. No surprise there, right?

But when they were asked what attribute was most important for any MTSO to have, the most common answer—by a long shot—was accuracy of transcription. About four out of every 10 respondents said accuracy was the most important quality that an MTSO should exhibit. The next most important attribute was quality, which was mentioned by 18 percent of respondents. Accuracy could be a synonym of quality, but it could also encompass other aspects of an MTSO’s business, including customer service and technical support.

Service and efficiency were tied for third place with nine percent of respondents saying they were the most important attribute. Turnaround time—the attribute that HIM leaders pointed out was exhibited most by their MTSOs—came in dead last as the most important attribute. Interestingly, none of these answers were prompted—that is, our researchers did not give the respondent a list of attributes to rank. The answers were volunteered by the respondents.

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Our research sheds light on why accuracy was the most desired attribute for MTSOs

HIM leaders agree: Accuracy impacts revenue and patient care, helps achieve meaningful use criteria

Are opinions about medical transcription changing? It used to be that accuracy among Medical Transcription Service Organizations (MTSOs) was a foregone conclusion. But data from a Silent Type survey seems to show that HIM leaders aren’t taking accuracy for granted anymore.

Additional data from our research sheds light on why accuracy was the most desired attribute for MTSOs. Our researchers read statements to respondents and asked them to rank their level of agreement on a scale of one-to-five, five being the highest. The following statements related to accuracy elicited strong agreement from respondents:

  • “Accurate, complete documentation is essential for improving care quality”—Respondents strongly agreed, giving this statement an average score of 4.95 on a scale of 5.
  • “Accurate, complete documentation is essential for improving revenue”—Again, respondents strongly agreed. The score of this statement was 4.89 on a scale of 5.
  • “Accurately transcribed documentation helps my hospital achieve meaningful use criteria”—The score on this statement wasn’t as high, but respondents generally agreed; its average score was 4.10 on a scale of 5.

Most HIM leaders strongly agree that accuracy impacts revenue and patient care, as well as helps their facility achieve meaningful use.

When was the last time you checked your transcription company’s accuracy. We audit our own accuracy periodically—as reported in our last newsletter, our accuracy rate is greater than 99 percent.

Is transcription accuracy becoming a bigger issue in the eyes of HIM leaders?

Photo credit: Flickr/Oran Viriyincy

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More with Marilyn: Template-transcription combo saves time, maintains compliance

By Marilyn Trapani

In an era when the amount of health care information astounds, providers find themselves in a quandary: How do they ensure complete patient information is communicated to medical records, coding, and third-party payers? How do they integrate clinical documentation improvement and incorporate all of the changes needed for ICD-10 implementation while still giving clinicians the information they need for patient care?

In an EMR environment, physicians can enter information into the system manually, dictate portions of documents, and copy historical information from one document to another. It can be complicated, making compliance more difficult.

The physician must manipulate historical records, attempt to dictate, and incorporate the transcribed section into the same document while using check boxes that may or may not be descriptive of a particular patient. Physicians intend to create a complete record, but sometimes their good intentions fall short, and the medical records department must wait patiently for them to complete the process.

The complex nature of some cases generally is not reflected in an EMR’s check boxes. If physicians spend two to three hours per day coordinating partial dictation with historical sections of documents, patient care will suffer. Fewer patients will be seen, fewer procedures performed, and less revenue generated. There also are compliance concerns involving getting physicians to actually complete the tasks. It may result in hospitals paying clerical staff to chase down physicians to gather the information necessary to complete records.

One possible solution to maintaining timely, accurate data is utilizing full dictation and transcription with EMR modules identifying compliance problems. It remains the most efficient and time-saving system for physicians to complete medical records without changing their workflow. Dictation is simple, a process that can be accomplished at any time through multiple mobile applications as well as by telephone.

Designed by medical records committees and approved by physician leaders, templates for report types can be created to meet ICD-10 requirements. Trained physicians dictate the necessary information, and a transcriptionist enters the data into a concise file format. If an organization opts for partial dictation, the report’s transcribed section can be uploaded via a Health Level Seven International format to the chosen EMR and melded to the check-box information that the physician selected to begin the process.

Read the entire article at

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Medical Transcription and More... since 1982.