Basic Flow Of Information Within A Healthcare Organization Using Ehrs Medical Transcription – Choosing the Right Service Provider

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Medical Transcription – Choosing the Right Service Provider

Medical transcription has become an integral part of the healthcare process, helping in the process of creating records, essentially providing effective support for healthcare facilities. Although this process is an integral part of the healthcare process, it is not part of the basic activity of the healthcare institution. A simple fix to ensure patient records are produced in a cost-effective, accurate, fast and secure manner is to outsource the entire process to a professional medical transcription service provider.

Choosing the right service provider is critical because that partnership will have a long-term impact on the health facility’s operations. It is a business decision that requires a qualification and evaluation process to ensure the formation of a working partnership. For this purpose, it is necessary to take into account a number of factors.

What factors should be considered when outsourcing? The process of choosing the right transcription provider should logically follow a two-stage process.

The first phase of the outsourcing decision:

  • Purpose: This part of the process is probably one of the most overlooked and most important steps in the entire process. This step requires the healthcare facility to clearly define what it hopes to gain from the entire exercise. Typically this may include:
    1. Simplifying the transcription process: It ensures that the process of converting dictation files into patient records occurs as something that happens naturally
    2. Reduction of processing time: It can ensure that the processing time required by the healthcare professional is met
    3. Expense reduction: It helps to save on the cost of creating patient records as well as other related costs
    4. Better focus on your core business: It has the added benefit of allowing the healthcare facility to concentrate on the core business of providing quality healthcare in a cost-effective manner
    5. Have a thinner organizational structure: It helps the organizational structure to be more compact by ensuring that in addition to the need for transcriptionists, other staff such as managers, administrators and IT staff are reduced.
    6. Speeding up the claims process: Ensures that records are created on time, helping to expedite the first stage of the claims cycle
  • Results expected from the outsourcing process: This phase could include defining the exact parameters for measuring the outcomes of medical transcription outsourcing:
    1. Acceptable accuracy levels: This is perhaps the most important factor, as the information collected plays an important role in the ongoing care of the patient
    2. Processing time for regular reports and STAT files: Processing time is very important because information should not only be accurate but also timely
    3. Complete security of confidential patient data: Maintaining the confidentiality of patient data at every stage is mandatory for healthcare institutions. This factor must be taken into account during outsourcing
  • Factoring future requirements: This essentially means that the healthcare facility must incorporate transcription requirements that may arise from future expansion plans, including:
    1. Adding new specialties: Adding new specialties would require the transcription vendor to be in a position to provide transcription services for the new specialties without compromising accuracy or turnaround time
    2. Opening of new branches: The expansion plans of the health facility would affect the transcription capacity
    3. EMR Adoption: It is important to ensure that the medical transcription service provider has the ability to integrate information from the EMR/EHR in the form of HL7 messages

The second stage of the outsourcing decision:

  • Resource suggestions from medical transcription service providers: This has become easy as information is just a click away. However, it is important to ask for more than the offered price of services
  • Receiving proposals: This phase would involve sorting through the proposals received to look for qualifying features such as the provider’s experience, HIPAA/HITECH compliance, technology used, and the type of team available to perform the work.

  • Evaluation: This stage of the process involves evaluating service providers based on criteria such as accuracy, turnaround time, price, and security.

  • Credential verification. This part of the process involves two steps:

    1. Reference check: This would mean following the testimonials of users who used similar services
    2. Free trial availability: Taking advantage of the free service trial ensures that the transcription provider can deliver the services as promised
  • Signing contract: This is the last step in the outsourcing process that involves defining in black and white the role of each party in the outsourcing process.

Outsourcing medical transcription requests is essentially like choosing a long-term partner and should be done with great care.

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