How to Become a Certified Medical Transcriptionist in the US

Medical transcribing might be a rewarding career decision if you are thinking about working in the medical or healthcare industry. In order to help you decide if this is the career for you, we’ve included information in this article information on medical transcriptionist salary, medical transcriptionist job description, medical transcriptionist requirements, medical transcriptionist skills as well a list of medical transcriptionist courses.

Medical Transcriptionist Job Description

Medical transcriptionists turn doctors’ voice records into written reports. They ensure that all medical terminology is used correctly, structure the documents under industry standards, and proofread them for grammar and spelling mistakes.

The accuracy and proper writing of all patient records and doctor report that are prepared by dictation is the responsibility of healthcare transcriptionists. Other responsibilities of the healthcare transcriptionist include:

  • Dictating into a document while listening to doctor dictation recordings. 
  • Reviewing and amending documents produced by speech-to-text software.
  • Use their understanding of medical terms to precisely proofread reports.
  • Maintaining and filing the completed paperwork in accordance with the employer’s regulations.

Medical Transcriptionist Salary

What is the average pay for a medical records transcriptionist in the US? As of July 26, 2022, the average Medical Records Transcriptionist pay in the United States was $49,475, although the normal salary range is $44,070 to $55,149.

Salary ranges can vary significantly depending on a variety of crucial aspects, including schooling, credentials, supplementary talents, and the time you’ve been working in a given field.

  • Common salary in the U.S.: $15.27 per hour
  • Some salaries range from $7.25 to $28.95 per hour.

Medical Transcriptionist Requirements

To find work as a healthcare transcriptionist, candidates must meet specific educational requirements and receive specialized training.

  • Education
  • Training
  • Certifications
  • Skills


A high school diploma or GED is the bare minimum educational qualification for a medical transcriptionist. An individual would be qualified to begin working toward certification after fulfilling these criteria.

An associate’s degree with a focus on medical transcribing is one of the authorized certification options. The typical completion time for this is two years, and it covers a comprehensive review of medical terminology, anatomy, and transcription methods.


In the US, specialized practical training is required to work as a medical transcriptionist. A degree, an on-site course from an approved university, or an online program can all be used to obtain this training.

In less than six months, several highly regarded online courses can offer technical instruction, real-world expertise, and certification. Learning how to use dictation software, comprehend medical language, and develop one’s typing abilities are all part of medical transcribing training.

A transcriptionist could be able to complete many hours of on-the-job training while being closely supervised, depending on where they received their training. Online learners in the field of medical transcribing may look for internships to obtain experience before applying for jobs.


Medical transcriptionists must hold a medical transcription certificate in many states in order to be employed. They can become certified by passing specific online courses or by finishing programs at a nearby institution or hospital.

Depending on the region, the certification procedure can take anywhere between six and 18 months to complete. The majority of states do not require medical transcriptionists to be licensed, but before applying for jobs, candidates should check the local laws.

The Association provides two significant qualifications for medical transcriptionists for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI):

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A transcriptionist could be able to complete many hours of on-the-job training while being closely supervised, depending on where they received their training. Online course participants in medical transcribing may look for internships to obtain real-world experience.

  1. Registered Healthcare Documentation Specialist (RHDS)

Recent graduates of medical transcriptionist education programs, transcriptionists who focus on a certain area of healthcare, like pediatrics, or physicians who run their own private practices, can all apply for the RHDS certification. For those with fewer than two years of job experience, the RHDS is a good option.

  1. A certified specialist in healthcare documentation (CHDS)

Healthcare transcriptionists with over two years of experience in advanced care or who work for a practice with various specialties are eligible for the CHDS certification.

Medical Transcriptionist Skills

The abilities that medical transcriptionists utilize to carry out their regular jobs are diverse. The following are essential abilities for a medical transcriptionist:

Medical expertise

Healthcare transcriptionists must understand and interpret advanced medical terminology and language. Healthcare transcriptionists can rapidly and accurately transcribe recordings because they are familiar with medical terminology. Many transcriptionists utilize medical dictionaries to round out their expertise, but most employers prefer individuals with a reasonably sizable medical vocabulary.


Often, rather than being paid by the hour, medical transcriptionists are paid by the word. Consequently, their pay increases as their typing speed do. Successful medical transcribers frequently have typing speeds that are on par with or even faster than the average. Typing precision is essential because medical fields cannot tolerate typing mistakes.

Writing abilities

Spelling, grammar, and syntax proficiency are requirements for medical transcribers. In a medical setting, simple mistakes can have serious repercussions, thus precision and strong writing abilities are important in this position.

Computer expertise

To fulfill their tasks, medical transcriptionists need to be able to use and operate specific computer software applications. This covers tools for altering audio files as well as word processors like Microsoft Word. With the aid of these tools, medical transcriptionists may do their work swiftly and communicate openly with their employers and superiors.

Observation of details

Work in medical transcription must be meticulous. Professionals need to be able to carefully listen to files and faithfully reproduce what they hear. They must carefully proofread their paperwork for inaccuracies and ensure that their own and the doctors’ terminology is accurate. Focused, meticulous, and attentive professionals are most likely to thrive in this field.

How to Become a Medical Transcriptionist

Some books detail medical transcription for dummies, making it easy to learn medical transcribing. However, certifications are still important if you want to advance in this field. We have listed the most typical processes for becoming a medical transcriptionist below:

  1. Get a degree.

Before becoming certified, someone interested in this profession must possess at least a high school diploma. They might also obtain an associate’s or bachelor’s degree to improve their work prospects. Numerous academic institutions, such as universities, community colleges, technical schools, and trade schools offer higher education degrees.

  1. Gain work experience

Medical transcriptionists may receive an internship or apprenticeship as part of their degree, depending on their chosen educational path. If not, they might need to look for chances to obtain real-world experience in the workplace. This may also entail volunteering, job shadowing, or general transcribing work.

  1. Earn a certification
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One of the most crucial elements to becoming a medical transcriptionist is certification. Although certification is optional, it may be required to work in the healthcare sector. Medical transcriptionists must achieve experience requirements and pass a test to get certified.

  1. Submit a job application

Medical transcriptionists can look for work in nearby healthcare facilities or online through job boards like Indeed. Transcribers who want to work from home might find freelance work. Applicants will need to submit a CV and documentation of their certification before being hired.

How Long does it take to become a Medical Transcriptionist?

What is the length of training to become a medical transcriptionist? In as little as one year, aspiring medical transcriptionists can get a certificate or certification. Typically, two years of full-time study are needed to earn an associate degree.

Best Paying Medical Transcriptionist Jobs

Working medical transcriptionist jobs from home can be very rewarding. With the increase in demand for medical transcriptionists, the field has witnessed a steady rise both in pay and for clients.

We have given a core overview of the medical transcriptionist job description. We shall list below some medical transcriptionist jobs one can start with, even with no prior experience. It is equally important you join the medical transcriptionist forums to gain regular updates on what is happening in the field.

Transcript Divas

You can do medical transcriptionist jobs from home with Transcript Divas.

With pay rates that can reach $2.98 for each audio minute, Transcript Divas is one of the more lucrative medical transcriptionist remote jobs. Although prior experience is not a requirement, they have rigorous standards and only accept a portion of applications.

You can submit an application straight on the Transcript Divas’ website if you’re interested in working for them as a freelancer. To complete the application, you’ll need to have your résumé or CV prepared and respond to a few questions.


Another excellent company to work for is Speechpad. Earnings per audio minute range from $0.25 to $2.50 (or $15 to $150 for every audio hour). PayPal sends payments twice a week.

You can sign up for free, but you must pass a transcribing and grammar test before you can work. Your rating as a worker determines the kind of employment you are qualified for. For additional opportunities, raise your rating. Additionally, there are opportunities to qualify for positions that pay more and require a quick turnaround, like captioning.

You are free to choose the precise jobs you want to take on, and there is no need that you to labor a minimum amount.

Averbach Transcription

One of the top transcription jobs is available at Averbach Transcription. Although they don’t specify any experience requirements, you must be able to pass their 20-minute transcription exam.

Their standard prices are $1 per audio minute or $1.50 for expedited orders (same day or overnight). Of course, you’ll be able to make more money if you can accept rush orders. Based on these figures, they assert that the majority of professional transcriptionists may earn $20 to $30 per hour of labor.

You’ll have the freedom to choose your own schedule and turn down employment if it doesn’t fit into it.

Transcription Outsourcing

Both general contractors and employees are welcome to apply for opportunities for transcription outsourcing. There are currently vacancies for law enforcement, medical, legal, financial, and general transcription, and they have employment in a range of different industries. Before you can join their team, you must pass at least one typing exam during the application process. Depending on the type of transcription you’ll be undertaking, there may be different test specifications needed.

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The technical capabilities provided by TranscribeMe include data annotations and speech recognition, besides transcription. This organization may have a brief test before hiring you, but no experience is necessary. Their areas of expertise include several sectors, including market research, technology, healthcare, and consulting.


Through 2030, the BLS anticipates a 7% reduction in employment for medical transcriptionists. The world of medical transcription is radically altering because of technology.

Despite a decline in employment, there will still be an average of 6,600 jobs for medical transcriptionists over the next ten years. We expect all of those positions to become available because of the need to replace workers who change careers or leave the workforce due to retirement.

The bottom line is that while many medical organizations are switching to technology-based documentation, others are still using medical transcriptionists for their documentation needs.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Is it hard to be a medical transcriptionist? Like most careers, medical transcription can be challenging; you will experience unpleasant days. Your job becomes simpler when you get excellent, thorough training. There are long and short reports.

What qualifications do you need to be a transcriber? A certificate or associate degree in legal, court reporting, or medical transcribing is required for a transcriptionist. In several places, legal transcriptionists who act as court reporters must be licensed or certified.

Can medical transcriptionists work from home? If you have good typing abilities and some medical knowledge, medical transcriptionist remote job options may be a fantastic alternative for you. While most employers who fill these roles look for experience, some also take recent certification program graduates into consideration.

Is transcription a good job? As a transcriptionist, working from home is a great opportunity to have flexible hours and a regular income. This might be a lucrative career for you if you are a skilled typist with solid grammar abilities.

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