Medical Transcriptionists


  1. Description

Medicine and Health Care

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Have you ever listened to a song you love and tried to decipher the lyrics? What about when you compare them to the actual lyrics and learn just how far off you really are? Imagine what can happen when doctors dictate their research findings or a patient’s history, and someone has to type up what they've said.

In medicine, mistakes can have dire consequences. That’s why it’s so important that medical transcriptionists are trained in the language of medicine and “doctorspeak.”

Medical transcriptionists listen to recordings dictated by doctors and other health care professionals. They turn what they hear into written medical documents -- from patient histories and physical examination reports to autopsy reports.

“We deal with a lot of doctors who speak English as a second language, so your [knowledge of] grammar comes into play.” Robin, Medical Transcriptionist

Are You Ready To...?

  • Understand complex medical terms
  • Respect patient privacy
  • Catch possible errors in translation
  • Consult physicians with questions or concerns
  • Work with computers  

It Helps To Be...

A good listener who is interested in language and attentive to detail. You’ll need to understand a range of people, including those who speak with an accent or speak very quickly. Sometimes you’ll need to edit disorganized information and turn it into a document that makes sense.

Make High School Count

  • Take plenty of science courses.
  • Work on your writing, grammar, and punctuation skills in English class.
  • Study a foreign language to further develop your language skills and your familiarity with different accents and pronunciation.
  • Build computer skills.
  • Learn to type.
  • Volunteer at a hospital or another health care setting to start soaking up medical lingo.

Did You Know?

Some medical transcriptionists work from home offices, sending and receiving their work online.