How to Save Money on Your Medical Transcription

It may seem odd that a medical transcription service is offering you tips on how to save money, but our goal at 2Ascribe Inc. to provide you with such great service and quality that you’ll tell your colleagues about us.  We love win/win scenarios.

  1. Audio Quality

If the quality of your recordings is poor, it takes significantly more time to transcribe your documents, and they probably require additional levels of editing.  Make sure there is no (or minimal) background noise.  Reduce static sounds such as holding the phone (receiver or cell phone) against your face with a 5 o’clock beard.  Pause when turning pages in the patient’s chart; the rustling sound may make a word hard to hear.  The poorer the quality of the recording, the more your transcription company will charge.

2. Accent

This isn’t something that you can control, but if you speak at a reasonable speed, you’ll be better understood.  And tell your transcription company if you want them to transcribe verbatim, or do you want them, as we say at 2Ascribe, ‘to make you look good’, and correct grammar and run on sentences.

3. Organize yourself

Spend a minute to organize yourself before dictating.  Don’t repeat information unless you’re summarizing your report.  We often hear from specialists that they believe that a letter to the referring doctor is skimmed if it’s more than a couple of pages.  Unless it’s a detailed or complicated case, such as a pain consultation or an independent medical examination, most consult letters are less than two pages.  It might even be helpful to have a list to organize the order that you want to dictate.  Better still, see #2 above and create templates.

4. Create a Style Guide, or work with your transcription company on this. 

A Style Guide contains such basic information as English (Canadian), normal margins and font style and size.  It also gives instructions to the transcriptionist on how you want your documents set up.  If you fax your letters, indicate this on the Style Guide.  Then you simply dictate the recipients’ full name and fax number.  If you want drug allergies highlighted, let the transcription company know.  After a heading, do you want them to continue typing on the same line, the line below, or leave an empty line under the heading.  How do you want 2nd page headers and footers formatted? Better still, send several samples of your consult letters (with patient identifiable information removed or blacked out) so that they can see how you like your letters formatted. 

5. Addresses and phone numbers

If you fax all your consult letters, ask that the transcription company not type out the address as well (unless there is no fax number, in which case they would type the address).  But make sure you spell the referring physician’s first and last name so that the transcriptionist can check for the fax number if the numbers are not heard clearly.  And say the numbers slowly and clearly, and maybe even repeat them.  A few seconds now can save hours of work later in figuring out that a consult letter was not faxed to the correct number.

And check out 2Ascribe’s new AUTOfax.  Dictate the recipient’s name and fax number at the beginning of your dictation, edit on line with WEBscribe, and when you electronically sign off on the document, your transcribed document is automatically faxed (to up to three different recipients). 

6. Templates

I’ve saved the best tip to last, as this is the greatest way to save money on your medical transcription services.  Ask if your transcription company supports templates, how many, and determine how much credit you will get.  If you have standard reports or letters, create a template for each of them.  The templates can address both genders and left and right.  You simply state at the beginning of the dictation which gender the patient is and the transcriptionist will change the templates ‘he/she’ to he or she, as appropriate.  The same holds for left and right.    Templates can be as simple as setting out the headings that you usually dictate, format your SOAP notes, or have whole paragraphs that you dictate each time, such as informing a patient about the risks of a particular procedure.  At 2Ascribe, you can have up to nine different templates.  And we’ll even help to create them for you. 

If you enjoyed this article, please tell your colleagues about it.  And remember, for every referral that becomes a 2Ascribe client, we’ll send you a $75 charity gift card to donate to the charity of your choice at CanadaHelps.


2Ascribe Inc. is a medical transcription services agency located in Toronto, Ontario Canada, providing medical transcription services to physicians, clinics and other healthcare providers across Canada.  Having recently introduced WEBscribe, a client interface portal for document management, 2Ascribe continues to implement and develop technology to assist and improve the transcription process for physicians and other healthcare providers.  As a service to our clients and the healthcare industry, 2Ascribe offers articles of interest to physicians and other healthcare professionals, medical transcriptionists and office staff, as well as of general interest.  Additional articles may be found at

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