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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:

Metro Areas Sorted by Total Employment for:
Medical Transcriptionists

Listed below are metro areas sorted by the total number of people employed in Medical Transcriptionists jobs , as of 2015

Source: 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

     
Metro Area (Alabama) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Mobile 100 $35,720
Huntsville 80 $42,100
Tuscaloosa 60 $31,540
Dothan 60 $31,940
Auburn 30 $29,470
Opelika 30 $29,470
Gadsden 30 $29,750
Montgomery N/A $19,650
Hoover N/A $41,860
Birmingham N/A $41,860
     
Metro Area (Alaska) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Anchorage 70 $30,690
     
Metro Area (Arizona) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Phoenix 770 $38,100
Scottsdale 770 $38,100
Mesa 770 $38,100
Tucson 140 $37,990
Lake Havasu City 50 $34,250
Kingman 50 $34,250
     
Metro Area (Arkansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Conway 240 $29,880
North Little Rock 240 $29,880
Little Rock 240 $29,880
Jonesboro 40 $30,290
Hot Springs 30 $29,550
     
Metro Area (California) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Long Beach 1260 $52,770
Los Angeles 1260 $52,770
Anaheim 1260 $52,770
San Francisco 510 $30,900
Hayward 510 $30,900
Oakland 510 $30,900
Arcade 410 $44,570
Arden 410 $44,570
Roseville 410 $44,570
Sacramento 410 $44,570
Santa Barbara 310 $19,590
Santa Maria 310 $19,590
Riverside 190 $52,620
San Bernardino 190 $52,620
Ontario 190 $52,620
San Diego 180 $49,190
Carlsbad 180 $49,190
Modesto 150 $35,030
San Jose 130 $53,770
Sunnyvale 130 $53,770
Santa Clara 130 $53,770
Bakersfield 90 $41,750
Chico 90 $51,160
Lodi 80 $39,570
Stockton 80 $39,570
Visalia 50 $33,510
Porterville 50 $33,510
Fresno 50 $49,550
Redding 30 $63,370
Napa N/A $51,540
     
Metro Area (Colorado) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lakewood 590 $43,580
Aurora 590 $43,580
Denver 590 $43,580
Colorado Springs 60 $41,380
Boulder 60 $43,210
Pueblo 30 $38,080
Fort Collins N/A $29,920
     
Metro Area (Connecticut) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Hartford 280 $41,090
East Hartford 280 $41,090
West Hartford 280 $41,090
Bridgeport 140 $44,380
Norwalk 140 $44,380
Stamford 140 $44,380
New Haven 120 $42,950
Danbury 50 $44,570
Waterbury 40 $36,210
     
Metro Area (Delaware) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Dover 50 $23,570
     
Metro Area (Florida) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Kissimmee 1370 $24,120
Orlando 1370 $24,120
Sanford 1370 $24,120
Tampa 1030 $41,050
St. Petersburg 1030 $41,050
Clearwater 1030 $41,050
Miami 960 $35,590
West Palm Beach 960 $35,590
Fort Lauderdale 960 $35,590
Jacksonville 510 $32,730
Winter Haven 290 $28,790
Lakeland 290 $28,790
Melbourne 160 $30,770
Titusville 160 $30,770
Palm Bay 160 $30,770
Ormond Beach 140 $29,850
Deltona 140 $29,850
Daytona Beach 140 $29,850
Cape Coral 140 $33,860
Fort Myers 140 $33,860
Brent 90 $21,100
Ferry Pass 90 $21,100
Pensacola 90 $21,100
Port St. Lucie 60 $27,500
Tallahassee 50 $30,270
Gainesville 40 $29,300
Ocala 40 $33,370
Marco Island 40 $35,580
Naples 40 $35,580
Immokalee 40 $35,580
Panama City 30 $34,950
Sarasota N/A $29,270
North Port N/A $29,270
Bradenton N/A $29,270
     
Metro Area (Georgia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Roswell 1200 $32,140
Atlanta 1200 $32,140
Sandy Springs 1200 $32,140
Athens 40 $33,410
Clarke County 40 $33,410
Savannah 40 $34,980
Dalton 40 $35,310
     
Metro Area (Hawaii) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Urban Honolulu 100 $23,530
     
Metro Area (Idaho) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Boise City 190 $34,260
     
Metro Area (Illinois) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Rockford 70 $36,210
Springfield 60 $35,670
Decatur 50 $25,020
Peoria 40 $32,860
Urbana 30 $35,200
Champaign 30 $35,200
     
Metro Area (Indiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Carmel 210 $35,570
Anderson 210 $35,570
Indianapolis 210 $35,570
Fort Wayne 110 $33,210
Terre Haute 40 $34,240
Elkhart 40 $35,320
Goshen 40 $35,320
     
Metro Area (Iowa) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Des Moines 170 $32,780
West Des Moines 170 $32,780
Cedar Falls 40 $26,010
Waterloo 40 $26,010
Dubuque 40 $35,770
Cedar Rapids 40 $36,660
     
Metro Area (Kansas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Wichita 210 $34,360
Topeka 40 $32,460
     
Metro Area (Kentucky) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Fayette 110 $31,750
Lexington 110 $31,750
Owensboro 40 $34,420
Fort Knox N/A $30,390
Elizabethtown N/A $30,390
     
Metro Area (Louisiana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Baton Rouge 240 $25,690
Lafayette 120 $32,260
Shreveport 110 $34,790
Bossier City 110 $34,790
Alexandria 50 $28,730
Monroe 40 $32,530
Thibodaux 30 $31,280
Houma 30 $31,280
Lake Charles N/A $30,890
New Orleans N/A $31,710
Metairie N/A $31,710
     
Metro Area (Maine) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Portland 170 $32,700
South Portland 170 $32,700
Bangor N/A $23,520
     
Metro Area (Maryland) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Towson 270 $28,340
Columbia 270 $28,340
Baltimore 270 $28,340
     
Metro Area (Massachusetts) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Barnstable Town N/A $53,560
     
Metro Area (Michigan) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Dearborn 550 $35,490
Warren 550 $35,490
Detroit 550 $35,490
Wyoming 480 $27,080
Grand Rapids 480 $27,080
Ann Arbor 80 $34,630
Flint 80 $35,480
Saginaw 60 $32,950
Portage 50 $35,360
Kalamazoo 50 $35,360
     
Metro Area (Mississippi) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Gulfport 120 $32,640
Pascagoula 120 $32,640
Biloxi 120 $32,640
Hattiesburg 70 $27,530
Jackson 50 $32,290
     
Metro Area (Missouri) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Springfield 110 $37,310
Columbia 50 $37,160
     
Metro Area (Montana) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Missoula 40 $33,600
     
Metro Area (Nebraska) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Lincoln 60 $39,230
     
Metro Area (Nevada) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Paradise 300 $30,800
Henderson 300 $30,800
Las Vegas 300 $30,800
Reno N/A $36,080
     
Metro Area (New Hampshire) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Manchester 40 $44,530
     
Metro Area (New Jersey) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Trenton 50 $38,190
     
Metro Area (New Mexico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Albuquerque 230 $38,890
Las Cruces 40 $32,900
Santa Fe N/A $21,790
     
Metro Area (New York) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Niagara Falls 280 $36,410
Buffalo 280 $36,410
Cheektowaga 280 $36,410
Syracuse 210 $33,410
Rochester 200 $33,490
Schenectady 120 $33,000
Albany 120 $33,000
Troy 120 $33,000
Rome 70 $39,080
Utica 70 $39,080
Glens Falls 40 $34,800
     
Metro Area (North Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Greensboro 270 $29,190
High Point 270 $29,190
Winston 80 $35,550
Salem 80 $35,550
Raleigh 70 $25,410
Fayetteville 60 $36,440
Wilmington 60 $37,530
Lenoir 40 $32,190
Hickory 40 $32,190
Morganton 40 $32,190
Asheville 40 $35,470
New Bern 30 $38,300
     
Metro Area (North Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Bismarck 110 $35,610
     
Metro Area (Ohio) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Cleveland 390 $34,840
Elyria 390 $34,840
Columbus 290 $36,470
Toledo 190 $28,980
Massillon 130 $31,540
Canton 130 $31,540
Akron 130 $34,140
Dayton 120 $30,370
Lima 40 $33,040
Mansfield 40 $34,410
     
Metro Area (Oklahoma) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Tulsa 190 $34,490
Oklahoma City 150 $36,070
     
Metro Area (Oregon) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Eugene 120 $39,830
Salem 70 $34,760
Bend 50 $36,420
Redmond 50 $36,420
Medford N/A $36,640
     
Metro Area (Pennsylvania) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Pittsburgh 690 $35,220
Wilkes 210 $32,470
Barre 210 $32,470
Hazleton 210 $32,470
Scranton 210 $32,470
Reading 190 $32,980
Carlisle 140 $36,290
Harrisburg 140 $36,290
Lancaster 130 $34,020
Hanover 80 $36,050
York 80 $36,050
Erie 60 $29,800
     
Metro Area (Puerto Rico) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Caguas 110 $26,750
Carolina 110 $26,750
San Juan 110 $26,750
Ponce 30 $20,710
     
Metro Area (South Carolina) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Columbia 170 $35,200
Anderson 160 $30,480
Mauldin 160 $30,480
Greenville 160 $30,480
North Charleston 120 $36,040
Charleston 120 $36,040
Spartanburg 70 $38,640
Florence 40 $39,680
     
Metro Area (South Dakota) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Sioux Falls 240 $31,850
Rapid City 120 $31,450
     
Metro Area (Tennessee) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Knoxville 160 $34,420
Johnson City 40 $29,720
Franklin N/A $31,390
Murfreesboro N/A $31,390
Nashville N/A $31,390
Davidson N/A $31,390
     
Metro Area (Texas) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Arlington 1130 $41,590
Dallas 1130 $41,590
Fort Worth 1130 $41,590
New Braunfels 790 $18,410
San Antonio 790 $18,410
The Woodlands 630 $41,640
Houston 630 $41,640
Sugar Land 630 $41,640
Round Rock 140 $39,210
Austin 140 $39,210
Tyler 100 $31,890
Mission 80 $35,420
Edinburg 80 $35,420
McAllen 80 $35,420
Lubbock 70 $31,420
Amarillo 60 $32,070
Corpus Christi 50 $34,460
Longview 30 N/A
Wichita Falls 30 $29,720
Abilene N/A $42,740
     
Metro Area (Utah) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Orem 50 $19,540
Provo 50 $19,540
Salt Lake City N/A $33,760
Clearfield N/A $36,300
Ogden N/A $36,300
     
Metro Area (Vermont) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
South Burlington 130 $41,520
Burlington 130 $41,520
     
Metro Area (Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Richmond 390 $24,890
Lynchburg 110 $32,730
Charlottesville N/A $24,890
Staunton N/A $28,590
Waynesboro N/A $28,590
Blacksburg N/A $31,120
Radford N/A $31,120
Christiansburg N/A $31,120
Roanoke N/A $33,230
     
Metro Area (Washington) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Bellevue 1100 $41,090
Seattle 1100 $41,090
Tacoma 1100 $41,090
Spokane Valley 150 $37,350
Spokane 150 $37,350
Yakima 50 $41,700
Tumwater 40 $37,210
Olympia 40 $37,210
     
Metro Area (West Virginia) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Morgantown 90 $29,740
Charleston 90 $29,950
     
Metro Area (Wisconsin) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Milwaukee 390 $38,350
Waukesha 390 $38,350
West Allis 390 $38,350
Neenah 100 $35,820
Oshkosh 100 $35,820
Green Bay 100 $36,540
Appleton 80 $34,950
Wausau 80 $36,960
Janesville 60 $41,710
Beloit 60 $41,710
Eau Claire N/A $36,170
Madison N/A $38,780
     
Metro Area (Wyoming) Total Employment Annual Median Salary
Cheyenne 40 $32,710

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.

All Types

Most Popular Industries for :
Medical Transcriptionists

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

Source: 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Industry Jobs Percent Annual Median Salary
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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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.

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