Online diploma programs in medical transcription are short-term programs that typically offer classes 100% over the Internet, though proctored exam testing or placement testing may need to be completed in person. Aspiring medical transcription students will want to seek out an accredited diploma program, since graduation from an accredited program is required for certification. Professional certification for transcriptionists, though voluntary, is common in the field.
Medical Transcriptionist Diploma Programs
Online medical transcriptionist diploma programs typically include courses that cover computer applications, office systems and terminology. Good keyboarding skills are required since students learn to transcribe and edit reports relating to patients' exams, surgeries, lab work and medical history.
Students also learn the necessary skills to understand and use medical terms in writing reports. Students interested in learning more about working in a medical office can find related online certificate programs in medical secretary and office administration; these programs incorporate medical transcription instruction into their curricula.
Program Information and Requirements
An online medical transcriptionist diploma program can typically be completed in one year. Coursework is offered online, but students might need to take placement tests on campus.
Online medical transcriptionist diploma programs do not typically require general education courses. Common core courses cover word processing, medical terminology and transcription.
Students learn to use software to create, edit and store documents. Career-specific proofreading and keyboarding skills also might be developed.
Students develop the skills needed to use dictating equipment, medical dictionaries and other reference materials. They also learn ways to effectively transcribe a variety of medical documents.
Students learn medical terms and ways terminology is used in medical documents. They build their medical vocabulary, focusing on correct spelling and pronunciation, as well as definitions.
Although the majority of medical transcriptionists work in hospitals or doctor's offices, many also work from home. In 2015, the BLS reported there were 57,830 medical transcriptionists working in the United States (www.bls.gov). The mean annual salary for medical transcriptionists was $35,720 as of May 2015. The BLS also predicted that the number of medical transcriptionists would decline 3 percent between 2014 and 2024.
Continuing Education Information
Students interested in additional study can pursue an online associate's degree program, such as an Associate of Applied Science in Medical Transcription. Certificate programs also can be found online. Voluntary certification as a Registered Medical Transcriptionist (RMT) or Certified Medical Transcriptionist (CMT) is available through the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI).
Online diploma programs for medical transcriptionists typically cover medical terminology, word processing and transcription. Additional education is available at the certificate level and the associate's degree level, and certification is offered through the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity.