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Medical Transcription Schools and Training Programs

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Medical Transcriptionists

Medical transcriptionists are responsible for transcribing recordings of medical reports onto computer documents, editing as needed for clarity, proper medical terminology, and grammatical accuracy. The reports typically describe patient conditions and medical procedures and are usually dictated by physicians and other health care professionals onto tape or digital voice files.

Medical transcriptionists need to be able to understand medical lingo and must be able to translate abbreviated or shortened terms into their full form. Ideally, they should also have a good understanding of diagnostic procedures and have knowledge in physiology, anatomy and pharmacology. The job requires compliance with medical record formatting requirements and also with ethical requirements to ensure patient confidentiality.

Medical Transcriptionists picture    Medical Transcriptionists image

Medical Transcriptionist Schools and Programs

The typical education requirement for medical transcriptionists is an associate degree or a certificate in medical transcription earned through one of the following:

  • Community college
  • Distance learning program
  • Vocational school

A medical transcriptionist program is typically one year, and often includes hands-on training with real transcription assignments. Coursework typically includes material related to:

  • Medical terminology
  • Human anatomy
  • Legal ramifications of health care documentation
  • English grammar

Though formal accreditation is not required for medical transcription programs, many employers prefer to hire those whose degree or certificate has accreditation behind it. For those seeking certification, completion of an accredited program may be required. The Approval Committee for Certificate Programs (AACP), established jointly by the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) and the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), offers a voluntary accreditation which has been granted to many medical transcription programs.

As health care professionals move toward innovative software that makes transcribing easier and faster, learning all you can about computers and voice recognition technology can offer a boost for your career in the future. The technology also allows for easy transference of files.

Medical Transcriptionist Certification

The Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) offers two designations for medical transcriptionists. Both are voluntary, but many employers prefer to hire someone who has earned a professional designation.

  • RMT: Registered Medical Transcriptionist. Those who have fewer than two years of experience in acute care or who have just graduated from a medical transcriptionist program are eligible for this designation. Passing the AHDI Level 1 exam is a requirement to earn the RMT, as well as a minimum of 30 hours in continuing education credits over a span of three years. As an added perk, those who earn the RMT are eligible to join the Registered Apprenticeship Program, a service of the U.S. Department of Labor that includes on-the-job learning and technical instruction.
  • CMT: Certified Medical Transcriptionist. Those who have more than two years of acute care experience with a wide variety of transcription experience are eligible for the CMT. It also requires a passing score on the certification exam, as well as an online class and other pertinent testing.

In addition to registration or certification, qualified applicants should have excellent hearing, a firm grasp of the English language, good grammar skills, knowledge of medical jargon and a working proficiency with computers and applicable software.

Apprenticeships for Medical Transcriptionists

In order to become a medical transcriptionist, it's usually a good idea to have some type of postsecondary training. However, there are other educational options for those interested in the field. The Medical Transcription Industry Association (MTIA), in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Labor, sponsors a Registered Apprenticeship Program for medical transcriptionists. In order to be eligible for this program, a candidate needs to have graduated from an ACCP approved program and also to have earned the RMT credential. The program offers a structured form of on-the-job learning and related technical instruction.

Sources:

The Top Cities tab shows employment statistics for Medical Transcriptionists by major metro area.

The Top Industries tab shows which industries have the most jobs for Medical Transcriptionists, along with salary data by industry.

The Browse Schools tab lets you search for schools by field of study, degree level, and location.

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Metro Areas Rated for Popularity for:
Medical Transcriptionists

Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Medical Transcriptionists relative to the population of the city, as of 2008. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

A Relative Popularity of 1.0 means that the city has an average number of the particular job, for its population, compared to the rest of the US. Higher numbers mean proportionally more jobs of that type.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Metro Area Jobs Salary
(2013)
Relative
Popularity

Alabama

     
Auburn 30 $29470 1.39
Opelika 30 $29470 1.39
Gadsden 30 $29750 2.18
Huntsville 80 $42100 0.88
Dothan 60 $31940 2.46
Birmingham 0 $41860 0
Hoover 0 $41860 0
Mobile 100 $35720 1.33
Montgomery 0 $19650 0
Tuscaloosa 60 $31540 1.5

Alaska

     
Anchorage 70 $30690 0.98

Arizona

     
Phoenix 770 $38100 0.98
Mesa 770 $38100 0.98
Scottsdale 770 $38100 0.98
Lake Havasu City 50 $34250 2.86
Kingman 50 $34250 2.86
Tucson 140 $37990 0.91

Arkansas

     
Hot Springs 30 $29550 2.24
Jonesboro 40 $30290 1.85
Little Rock 240 $29880 1.73
North Little Rock 240 $29880 1.73
Conway 240 $29880 1.73

California

     
Bakersfield 90 $41750 0.75
Fresno 50 $49550 0.36
Chico 90 $51160 2.98
Redding 30 $63370 1.39
Riverside 190 $52620 0.35
San Bernardino 190 $52620 0.35
Ontario 190 $52620 0.35
Sacramento 410 $44570 1.12
Roseville 410 $44570 1.12
Arden 410 $44570 1.12
Arcade 410 $44570 1.12
Los Angeles 1260 $52770 0.53
Long Beach 1260 $52770 0.53
Anaheim 1260 $52770 0.53
Modesto 150 $35030 2.17
Napa 0 $51540 0
San Diego 180 $49190 0.32
Carlsbad 180 $49190 0.32
Santa Maria 310 $19590 4.02
Santa Barbara 310 $19590 4.02
San Francisco 510 $30900 0.56
Oakland 510 $30900 0.56
Hayward 510 $30900 0.56
Stockton 80 $39570 0.92
Lodi 80 $39570 0.92
San Jose 130 $53770 0.3
Sunnyvale 130 $53770 0.3
Santa Clara 130 $53770 0.3
Visalia 50 $33510 0.79
Porterville 50 $33510 0.79

Colorado

     
Fort Collins 0 $29920 0
Boulder 60 $43210 0.8
Colorado Springs 60 $41380 0.58
Denver 590 $43580 1.03
Aurora 590 $43580 1.03
Lakewood 590 $43580 1.03
Pueblo 30 $38080 1.31

Connecticut

     
Hartford 280 $41090 1.16
West Hartford 280 $41090 1.16
East Hartford 280 $41090 1.16
New Haven 120 $42950 1.02
Waterbury 40 $36210 1.43
Bridgeport 140 $44380 0.77
Stamford 140 $44380 0.77
Norwalk 140 $44380 0.77
Danbury 50 $44570 1.54

Delaware

     
Dover 50 $23570 1.9

Florida

     
Gainesville 40 $29300 0.75
Jacksonville 510 $32730 1.95
Cape Coral 140 $33860 1.45
Fort Myers 140 $33860 1.45
Deltona 140 $29850 1.86
Daytona Beach 140 $29850 1.86
Ormond Beach 140 $29850 1.86
Orlando 1370 $24120 2.92
Kissimmee 1370 $24120 2.92
Sanford 1370 $24120 2.92
Palm Bay 160 $30770 1.93
Melbourne 160 $30770 1.93
Titusville 160 $30770 1.93
Panama City 30 $34950 0.9
Pensacola 90 $21100 1.26
Ferry Pass 90 $21100 1.26
Brent 90 $21100 1.26
Port St. Lucie 60 $27500 1.06
Lakeland 290 $28790 3.31
Winter Haven 290 $28790 3.31
Miami 960 $35590 0.94
Fort Lauderdale 960 $35590 0.94
West Palm Beach 960 $35590 0.94
Naples 40 $35580 0.67
Immokalee 40 $35580 0.67
Marco Island 40 $35580 0.67
North Port 0 $29270 0
Sarasota 0 $29270 0
Bradenton 0 $29270 0
Ocala 40 $33370 1.06
Tallahassee 50 $30270 0.71
Tampa 1030 $41050 2.02
St. Petersburg 1030 $41050 2.02
Clearwater 1030 $41050 2.02

Georgia

     
Athens 40 $33410 1.09
Clarke County 40 $33410 1.09
Atlanta 1200 $32140 1.15
Sandy Springs 1200 $32140 1.15
Roswell 1200 $32140 1.15
Dalton 40 $35310 1.38
Savannah 40 $34980 0.65

Hawaii

     
Urban Honolulu 100 $23530 0.51

Idaho

     
Boise City 190 $34260 1.55

Illinois

     
Champaign 30 $35200 0.76
Urbana 30 $35200 0.76
Decatur 50 $25020 2.7
Peoria 40 $32860 0.5
Rockford 70 $36210 1.11
Springfield 60 $35670 1.4

Indiana

     
Fort Wayne 110 $33210 1.23
Indianapolis 210 $35570 0.5
Carmel 210 $35570 0.5
Anderson 210 $35570 0.5
Elkhart 40 $35320 0.8
Goshen 40 $35320 0.8
Terre Haute 40 $34240 1.38

Iowa

     
Cedar Rapids 40 $36660 0.72
Des Moines 170 $32780 1.15
West Des Moines 170 $32780 1.15
Dubuque 40 $35770 1.72
Waterloo 40 $26010 1.11
Cedar Falls 40 $26010 1.11

Kansas

     
Topeka 40 $32460 0.9
Wichita 210 $34360 1.69

Kentucky

     
Elizabethtown 0 $30390 0
Fort Knox 0 $30390 0
Owensboro 40 $34420 2.01
Lexington 110 $31750 0.97
Fayette 110 $31750 0.97

Louisiana

     
Alexandria 50 $28730 1.87
Baton Rouge 240 $25690 1.49
Houma 30 $31280 0.74
Thibodaux 30 $31280 0.74
Lafayette 120 $32260 1.31
Lake Charles 0 $30890 0
Monroe 40 $32530 1.17
New Orleans 0 $31710 0
Metairie 0 $31710 0
Shreveport 110 $34790 1.46
Bossier City 110 $34790 1.46

Maine

     
Portland 170 $32700 2.01
South Portland 170 $32700 2.01
Bangor 0 $23520 0

Maryland

     
Baltimore 270 $28340 0.5
Columbia 270 $28340 0.5
Towson 270 $28340 0.5

Massachusetts

     
Barnstable Town 0 $53560 0

Michigan

     
Ann Arbor 80 $34630 0.91
Flint 80 $35480 1.4
Grand Rapids 480 $27080 2.18
Wyoming 480 $27080 2.18
Detroit 550 $35490 0.7
Warren 550 $35490 0.7
Dearborn 550 $35490 0.7
Saginaw 60 $32950 1.68
Kalamazoo 50 $35360 0.9
Portage 50 $35360 0.9

Mississippi

     
Gulfport 120 $32640 1.93
Biloxi 120 $32640 1.93
Pascagoula 120 $32640 1.93
Hattiesburg 70 $27530 2.89
Jackson 50 $32290 0.46

Missouri

     
Columbia 50 $37160 1.33
Springfield 110 $37310 1.3

Montana

     
Missoula 40 $33600 1.55

Nebraska

     
Lincoln 60 $39230 0.83

Nevada

     
Reno 0 $36080 0
Las Vegas 300 $30800 0.79
Henderson 300 $30800 0.79
Paradise 300 $30800 0.79

New Hampshire

     
Manchester 40 $44530 0.83

New Jersey

     
Trenton 50 $38190 0.55

New Mexico

     
Albuquerque 230 $38890 1.47
Las Cruces 40 $32900 1.27
Santa Fe 0 $21790 0

New York

     
Albany 120 $33000 0.65
Schenectady 120 $33000 0.65
Troy 120 $33000 0.65
Glens Falls 40 $34800 1.85
Buffalo 280 $36410 1.23
Cheektowaga 280 $36410 1.23
Niagara Falls 280 $36410 1.23
Rochester 200 $33490 0.95
Syracuse 210 $33410 1.64
Utica 70 $39080 1.39
Rome 70 $39080 1.39

North Carolina

     
Asheville 40 $35470 0.52
Fayetteville 60 $36440 1.13
Greensboro 270 $29190 1.85
High Point 270 $29190 1.85
Hickory 40 $32190 0.65
Lenoir 40 $32190 0.65
Morganton 40 $32190 0.65
Raleigh 70 $25410 0.29
New Bern 30 $38300 1.68
Wilmington 60 $37530 1.24
Winston 80 $35550 0.73
Salem 80 $35550 0.73

North Dakota

     
Bismarck 110 $35610 3.68

Ohio

     
Akron 130 $34140 0.93
Canton 130 $31540 1.91
Massillon 130 $31540 1.91
Cleveland 390 $34840 0.91
Elyria 390 $34840 0.91
Columbus 290 $36470 0.7
Dayton 120 $30370 0.78
Lima 40 $33040 2.17
Mansfield 40 $34410 1.73
Toledo 190 $28980 1.52

Oklahoma

     
Oklahoma City 150 $36070 0.58
Tulsa 190 $34490 1.03

Oregon

     
Bend 50 $36420 1.62
Redmond 50 $36420 1.62
Eugene 120 $39830 1.88
Salem 70 $34760 1.02
Medford 0 $36640 0

Pennsylvania

     
Harrisburg 140 $36290 1.1
Carlisle 140 $36290 1.1
Erie 60 $29800 1.16
Pittsburgh 690 $35220 1.46
Reading 190 $32980 2.7
Lancaster 130 $34020 1.29
Scranton 210 $32470 1.93
Wilkes 210 $32470 1.93
Barre 210 $32470 1.93
Hazleton 210 $32470 1.93
York 80 $36050 1.11
Hanover 80 $36050 1.11

Puerto Rico

     
Ponce 30 $20710 1.14
San Juan 110 $26750 0.37
Carolina 110 $26750 0.37
Caguas 110 $26750 0.37

South Carolina

     
Florence 40 $39680 1.12
Greenville 160 $30480 0.99
Anderson 160 $30480 0.99
Mauldin 160 $30480 0.99
Charleston 120 $36040 0.86
North Charleston 120 $36040 0.86
Columbia 170 $35200 1.14
Spartanburg 70 $38640 1.14

South Dakota

     
Rapid City 120 $31450 4.24
Sioux Falls 240 $31850 3.92

Tennessee

     
Johnson City 40 $29720 1.14
Knoxville 160 $34420 1.02
Nashville 0 $31390 0
Davidson 0 $31390 0
Murfreesboro 0 $31390 0
Franklin 0 $31390 0

Texas

     
Abilene 0 $42740 0
Amarillo 60 $32070 1.26
Austin 140 $39210 0.35
Round Rock 140 $39210 0.35
Houston 630 $41640 0.51
The Woodlands 630 $41640 0.51
Sugar Land 630 $41640 0.51
Corpus Christi 50 $34460 0.66
Dallas 1130 $41590 0.82
Fort Worth 1130 $41590 0.82
Arlington 1130 $41590 0.82
San Antonio 790 $18410 1.98
New Braunfels 790 $18410 1.98
Longview 30 $0 0.76
Lubbock 70 $31420 1.23
McAllen 80 $35420 0.78
Edinburg 80 $35420 0.78
Mission 80 $35420 0.78
Tyler 100 $31890 2.5
Wichita Falls 30 $29720 1.29

Utah

     
Provo 50 $19540 0.57
Orem 50 $19540 0.57
Salt Lake City 0 $33760 0
Ogden 0 $36300 0
Clearfield 0 $36300 0

Vermont

     
Burlington 130 $41520 2.55
South Burlington 130 $41520 2.55

Virginia

     
Blacksburg 0 $31120 0
Christiansburg 0 $31120 0
Radford 0 $31120 0
Charlottesville 0 $24890 0
Richmond 390 $24890 1.5
Roanoke 0 $33230 0
Lynchburg 110 $32730 2.68
Staunton 0 $28590 0
Waynesboro 0 $28590 0

Washington

     
Olympia 40 $37210 1.05
Tumwater 40 $37210 1.05
Seattle 1100 $41090 1.44
Tacoma 1100 $41090 1.44
Bellevue 1100 $41090 1.44
Spokane 150 $37350 1.58
Spokane Valley 150 $37350 1.58
Yakima 50 $41700 1.41

West Virginia

     
Charleston 90 $29950 1.79
Morgantown 90 $29740 3.38

Wisconsin

     
Appleton 80 $34950 1.6
Green Bay 100 $36540 1.44
Janesville 60 $41710 2.44
Beloit 60 $41710 2.44
Eau Claire 0 $36170 0
Oshkosh 100 $35820 2.68
Neenah 100 $35820 2.68
Madison 0 $38780 0
Milwaukee 390 $38350 1.12
Waukesha 390 $38350 1.12
West Allis 390 $38350 1.12
Wausau 80 $36960 2.82

Wyoming

     
Cheyenne 40 $32710 2.06
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Career Stories (Job Profiles) for Medical Transcriptionists

To find out more about building a career as Medical Transcriptionists, we spoke with professionals in the field across a variety of specialties. Learn about their experiences on the job, the steps they took to complete their education, and what it takes to excel in this industry. Click the link to see a story.

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Most Popular Industries (as of 2008) for:
Medical Transcriptionists

Industries representing at least 1% of total jobs for the occupation.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Industry Jobs Percent Salary
(2008)
Hospital 37,340 43% $33,000
Medical Office 31,210 36% $31,470
Office Services And Staffing 14,050 16% $30,340
Business Management 1,260 1% $35,270
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Medical Transcription Schools by State

We have some additional detailed pages at the state level for Medical Transcriptionists.

Numbers in parentheses are counts of relevant campus-based schools in the state; online schools may also be available.