How to Choose an Electronic Health Records (EHR) Transcription Service?

Transcription of electronic health records is still a vital service, even though an increasing number of EHR produce doctor’s reports automatically. When medical personnel need to use a service for transcription it needs to be capable of producing prompt transcriptions, be cost effective and be perfectly accurate.

With as busy as most medical practices are these days, how does an office determine how to decide on which EHR transcription service to choose to do the work?

5 Things to Consider While Hiring EHR Transcription Service

#1: Compliance with HIPAA

Whichever transcription service is utilized, it must be fully compliant with all sections of HIPAA regulations that apply to the transcription of electronic health records. The way to do this is examine prospective transcription service’s HIPAA compliance statement, which they should proudly have presented you, to find out under which part, which rules of HIPAA the transcription service is compliant. You especially need to make sure they are compliant with the privacy rule.

#2: Require and Thoroughly Check References

A transcription service that is qualified to do a good job will have an excellent listing of customers, who are satisfied and have agreed to be contacted as a reference. You need more than a list of names, you need to take the time, or task a trusted staff member, to check out the references.

#3: Test Transcription Examination

It is an excellent idea to have a sample EHR be given to each prospective transcription service so you can check how well they can do the job that you require. By giving the same EHR to each service, you can make a side-by-side comparison. You also need to have a checklist of things you are going to expect from any transcription service, such as online access, secure procedures to protect the data provided for transcription, and so on.

#4: Cost Effectiveness

You may be required to have EHR transcribed but you are not required to overpay for any level of service. Part of your checking of supplied references should include questions about the transcription service’s billing practices and if there have been any problems.

There is a wide range of ways by which various transcription services charge. You need to make sure that you fully understand the method and manner of future billings. This is one of the most important areas to consider when choosing a transcription service, but also one of the most difficult to compare in an item to like item basis. This is also another reason for providing each prospective transcription service with a sample EHR to process, including a complete billing. It can separate the service that can do the best job for you from those that you may not want to deal with.

#5: Review Hiring Qualifications of Transcription Service Staff

Your office has the right to know the qualifications required for hiring staff of any transcription service you are considering to place under contract for transcription services. It is your right to expect the medical transcriptionist that works on the records of your patients to be certified by the AHDI. This means the medical transcriptionists working under your contract will be certified as either a Certified or Registered Medical Transcriptionist. This will ensure that the staff performing medical transcription for your office has the following skills and abilities.

  • Thorough knowledge of terminology applicable to EHR
  • Excellent writing, grammar, memory and communication skills
  • Computer literate, especially for word processing and spreadsheet functions
  • Ability to be accurate, even when working under time constraints
  • Is able to properly follow instructions
  • Is able to check with the appropriate references on questions of terminology
  • Exhibits no dyslexic tendencies and can correctly maintain and record numbers and figures

These are the things your office must seriously consider when choosing a medical transcription service to place under contract with your medical office.