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Serving Over 20,000 US Medical Transcriptionists

No MT's salary alone provides 'the finer things in life'. You

Posted By: sm on 2009-04-22
In Reply to: LOL is right...If you're only making 4 cpl at TT - LOLing at YOUR salary!

are delusional if you think being a TT MT makes you rich. Why are all the loonies/TT cheerleaders/TT management on the board tonight? Or is it just one person who severely needs some ADD medicine?

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As with most things in life ..
You have to do what works for you. If you are getting experience doing something you enjoy, then you need to ignore the negative posts and be of help to those you can.
I agree - These things can take on a life of their own.
The 'finer things in life' on 4 cpl?! LOLOLOL.
For people with other things scheduled in a busy life
That does not work.
'The pay isn't fun'?! It's more than not fun, it's
a ripoff to MTs. Produce 2 or 3 times as many lines to make the same amount of pay, takes nearly as long as just typing them, while the MTSO charges the clients the same amount as regular transcription and rakes the $$$ in.
Does the Shorthand program work well? I don'the know
anything about it but I just started a new job with Meditech and there is no associated program for AutoCorrect or macros. They suggested we d/l the ShortHand program which I did d/l the free 30 day trial. I haven't used it yet but I really miss macros and shortcuts...Will it be worth the $99.99 purchase price when my 30 days expires?  Thanks.
When I went to school 13 years ago for MT (I know, back in the day) they always emphasized that the best situation was to work in-house for a few years before attempting to work at home. That option is pretty scarce now, and I keep wondering what the longterm effect will be as far as potential excellent MTs giving up without reaching their goal.
I average between $18-20/hour for acute care and have been doing this for 12+ years. What I don't get is when are these services going to wake up and pay for experience. I would think that it would be more cost effective to pay a higher rate for an MT who does not need a ton of QA than to pay a lower rate for less experience and then pay QA on top of that to correct the report.
QA salary
Yes QASs are paid hourly. 
Thanks to those who have answered so far. I am hoping that the responses point a realistic picture of this career good/bad and also by identifying the companies that fairly compensate their MTs, giving credit where credit is due. I should I averaging around $17 an hour working for a private larger practice, with benefits, at home, and this includes insurance. I am not all that happy with the hourly rate, but in my case the benefits are a major factor. There is a chance for incentive which I am struggling with.
We have a production minimum we have to meet and then anything over is paid on incentive. It is basically a fair system for both the company and the MT. I like that I have the opportunity to push it and make a little extra - put I really do have to push it!
Our minimum is actually based on minutes. I want to say around 20 minutes an hour, which sounds like it should not be much but we do a lot of retrieving info from the EMR and putting reports into different files, etc. If this was straight transcribing I would be making a great salary - but way more involved on the clerical end of things, plus tons of little 30 second reports which really kill you on minutes. Nothing loads at all so pulling info from the EMR for each individual patient. It can become very frustrating.
How is salary?,...nm


In some parts of the country 15K would be an acceptable income, not good but the best available.
According to Salary.com

mean expected salary for a US medical Transcriptionist is $36,956.  I am curious if anyone is actually coming close to that.  I know I sure the !#1& dont't.

Average salary for MT


 not sure if it matters from state to state but i live in NY and would like to know what the average income might be for a MT thinking of going to school for this so I'm not sure what the variables would be as far as income. I know that some work for hospitals or private practice would like to get a round about figure for the average.


Try salary.com to get this info. nm
The Salary Is Correct
The typo was not the salary. That is really what I am earning.
Withhold 10% of salary for 401(k).... sm
and never deposit those funds in employee's retirement account.  Repeatedly hang up on employee who is demanding Show me the money!  Wait for Labor Dept. to hold feet to fire, dragging resolution out as long as possible.
Salary Survey

Looking at the post below about who loves their company, I am hoping to take this information a step further with what I hope is a fair survey.  Working 40 hours a week, what is your salary, acute care versus clinic, benefits versus no benefits, and what company do you work for?  I think it is very hard to judge what the individual companies are offering, and a lot of the opinions are based on what works for one does not work for another.  Thanks to all who are willing to share this info. 

Also, has your salary gone up (ha, ha), stayed the same, or gone down over the last 5 years?  Thanks again.


Salary is fine
Salary is fine ... how are you?
What do you consider an excellent salary?
If you don't mind me asking. I've never made less than $22/hr average on production and would like to keep it that way.
now it's being paid salary?? oh, my, please


$800 for 2 weeks at salary equals an average of $400/week equals $10 an hour  - oh, this bizzaro drama just gets sadder and sadder and the ridiculous bar keeps getting pushed higher and higher...  or is it lower and lower...

if my salary is $ 100,000.--, I would all forget about
ham sandwich and alcohol, etc....
BTW, with the right 'connection' foreigners can get everything, over there, so I have heard.
We work well with our recruiter who also is on salary. We have
open communication and we allow her to do what is necessary to get us the best MTs possible and she has. We do not have a revolving door and never have. We personally have received compliments on the way she has handled our potential MTs and the ones we have hired. One part of her job though is to be liason between those MTs that are hired and the mgmt staff and in doing so, whatever that might be wrong (very little has been) can be fixed. So far all are happy and we are happy. Even though she does not work in the office, we have open communication daily and any questions that need answering are fully answered. All paperwork is shared through our server so it is not necessary to have the paperwork in office for one thing because we trust her.
MT supervisor salary, how much do you make? nm
Anyone have a ballpark salary for managers?
Two years ago I made $51K as an MT, and it is gradually going down because of line scalping. Thanks for your input.
typo being your monthly salary
As I recall, anything over 1x year salary SM
required proof of insurability. 
Hardly any jobs out there post the salary.

I don't think it matters if it's transcription or what.  I can't imagine testing for a company before calling them and flat out asking what the pay rate is for the position being offered.  What a total waste of time for both the company and the applicant. 

...and I personally do not think it is inappropriate to laugh at a ridiculous rate and slam down the phone either.  I think the asshats out there who are offering a nickel a line need to get laughed at and rudely hung up on to boot.  None of this PC politeness garbage of thanking them for their time either if they pull a number like that out of their hineys.  A man sure as heck wouldn't stand for that kind of pud pullin'...why should we?!  

Hourly and salary are not the same thing. lol
more than double my yearly salary
Always knew I worked harder than most - now I get paid like it.
I also have doubled my salary with production.

what MT is making a "huge' salary sm
so much that they need to get into their medical records? That is just one more invasion of privacy. Besides who intereprets what they read. Someone may have a chronic illness that has no effect whatsoever on their job. These people are not God and cannot predict how long a person is going to be around.

More and more invasion of privacy!
Wonder what the *average* MTSO VP's salary is...
And if PB is paid more or less than *average*... javascript:editor_insertHTML('text','');javascript:editor_insertHTML('text','');

Too bad the MTs don't get to vote on THAT decision. Instead, if this is all true about a pay cut, the MTs are going to give up what once was a better than average cpl rate so PB (and JH) can keep on making the big bucks and keep on doing whatever it is they do.
Wonder what the *average* MTSO VP's salary is...
And if PB is paid more or less than *average*...

Too bad the MTs don't get to vote on THAT decision. Instead, if this is all true about a pay cut, the MTs are going to give up what once was a better than average cpl rate so PB (and JH) can keep on making the big bucks and keep on doing whatever it is they do... but they'll be doing it with less capable MTs. Good luck with that, ladies.
You can make a decent salary but
you have to have good platform and not a lot of people training. I did 750 the first hour today, times that by 4 and see what it came up to.
Well I do earn a pretty decent salary
and I am not talking anything under $50,000. I have heard of some of you recruiters who earn $30,000. I would not do it at all for that. I know one woman who earns $58,000 as a recruiter. I know another who earns $42,000. I know another who is paid per head and I won't do it because that forces you to hire anyone.

For what I earn, yesI will keep an open phone line to an excellent potential employee.

I hope the typo is your monthly salary. nm


Yeah I did look it up and that is the way I took it.. 1x your annual salary..They do also have long
and short-term disability which may be of help if you are out of work for any length of time.
The ones who don't NEED the real salary are killing it for the rest of us.
The ones who have the husband with the fat salary who pays the bills are the ones taking whatever pay they're offered instead of standing up for the salary we deserve. THOSE are holding us down!
It's NOT the olden days, as you put it. It hasn't been that way for a few decades.
I just looked at the salary for ultrasound tech and
it is awesome! I went on line and we can study part time on line and then travel for the lab part. The bad thing is getting the 100.00 application fee, and then getting financial aide. So I am still working really hard at MT and saving the money... I think it would be a great way to work at home and get out of the house too, doing both things... but first things first... if it is meant to be, it will happen. At least there may be light at the end of the tunnel and not just a tunnel leading no where or to the grave. I know that stress can lead to the grave and no way is any career worth it... nor is any bill collector worth it... Thanks for giving hope to my day to all of the posters here... at least I have hope, even if I never make it to ultrasound school... one day at a time...
I'm on salary and looking to leave for ages, guess there is no perfect job.
That's a $42 a day per diem on TOP OF SALARY ... reading comprehension, people.
Not every offer on the job board is suspect. Chill.

My bet is that it's a really good deal, and if I lived in the PNW, I would look into it (I'd love to live in Alaska for a minute).

I had a pharmacist friend who was looking into going up there and working for a year or two - just the sign-on bonuses alone were $100,000.

Alaska, though, is known for it's crazy, antisocial population.

Sounds perfect for transcriptionists. Heh.
checked the CEOs salary of Transcend. See inside.

Maybe if we lowered his salary we wouldn't be paid peanuts.

Salary $265,000.00
Bonus $0.00
Other Annual Compensation $0.00
Long term incentive plan payouts $0.00
Restricted stock awards $0.00
Security underlying options $0.00
All other compensation $0.00
Option awards $ $68,523.00
Non-equity incentive plan compensation $132,500.00
Change in pension value and nonqualified deferred compensation earnings $0.00
Total Compensation $466,023.00

Options Granted

MT average salary is $28,600. Does this sound correct? I found this out on Salaries.com
just curious if this is correct for a MT.
RE: MT average salary is $28,600. Does this sound correct? I found this out on Salaries
Check out this article from 2004 on MTx salaries:

MT Salary woes article in Advance for Health Information Prof. 8/2008

Vol. 18 •Issue 17 • Page 20
Reactions to the MT Study

A group of professors is taking a hard look at the medical transcription industry.

His knowledge of the industry a few years ago? Admittedly, zero. Coming from, as he described it, a position of ignorance about the medical transcription industry, Gary David, PhD, associate professor of sociology at Bentley College, Waltham, MA, hit the road and headed to Reno, NV, last year, where he took in the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) Conference. After realizing no formal academic research had ever been done on the medical transcription industry, Dr. David and two Bentley colleagues, Donald Chand, PhD, professor of information and process management, and Angela Garcia, PhD, associate professor of sociology, set out to do an in-depth study of the industry.

The first part of the study was an online survey taken by 3,800 MTs, and the results of the survey were compiled, analyzed and presented as the study's preliminary findings. The full study is still in its infancy; the preliminary results from the survey represent only one part of the teams multifaceted approach. Dr. David has become embedded in the industry, serving on task forces and committees with AHDI and the Medical Transcription Industry Association (MTIA), and he's now a staple at the annual conferences.

ADVANCE spoke to Dr. David, as well as to experts in the industry. We aimed to look at specific aspects of the study's preliminary results and gauge its reception. The opinions are mixed when it comes to three major issues in the medical transcription industry: quality, the work force shortage and the ever-present salary issue.

Questions on Quality

The survey posed several questions related to the quality of documentation done by MTs. Nearly half of MTs reported that they see how flagged errors are resolved only rarely or never. Also, the survey showed that 59 percent of MTs transcribe for multiple physicians at multiple hospitals and/or clinics. Dr. David's view is that if an MT isn't told how a flagging issue was resolved, he or she may not know how to resolve a similar issue in the future, which can affect quality. Likewise, Dr. David noted, if an MT is transcribing for many accounts, he or she might not be able to develop an ear for physicians.

According to David Plummer, founder and CEO, Probity Medical Transcription, Harrisburg, PA, quality review is useless unless that information is shared quickly with the MTs. He also agreed that transcriptionists should have primary accounts to work on, and then when that runs out, have pre-determined secondary and tertiary accounts. Today, many MTs are transcribing the dictations of multiple physicians from multiple hospitals and/or clinics, Plummer said, and that's just the way the business model works for most medical transcription service organizations (MTSOs), he explained. Quality, turnaround times (TATs) and productivity suffer in this design; however, when you have a transcription system where the pools do not contain sophisticated logic and has transcriptionists flit from one account to another, these are expected outcomes, in Plummer's opinion. What has happened is that the architecture of some of the newer platforms has not been built with [MT familiarity] in mind, and it creates these massive pools with multiple hospitals and tens of thousands of physicians, and that's just not good for quality or the MT, Plummer explained.

Chris Hopkins, chief operating officer, Landmark Transcription, St. Davids, PA, looked at the survey results from another angle. He noted that approximately 50 percent of his work force consists of independent contractors, which may indicate that those MTs are working for multiple companies, which would explain why they are transcribing for many different accounts. Hopkins also said that just because an MT is transcribing for multiple accounts doesn't mean that quality work isn't being produced. Landmark maintains a system where MTs are assigned certain accounts, and MTs do transcribe for multiple physicians. By working on certain accounts, however, MTs can keep track of the different client specifications, something that Hopkins said may be difficult in a pooling system as mentioned above. [MTs] can't build up any kind of speed or fluency on an account when they're doing 10 different accounts, Hopkins said.

Bonnie Crow, director of U.S. operations at MxSecure, Scottsdale, AZ, agreed that in an MTSO setting, MTs are most likely transcribing for multiple accounts. These MTs are often experienced and highly skilled, Crow said, and therefore they produce high quality documents. With the flagging issue, Crow said that software used at MxSecure provides feedback to MTs, and she believes most platforms will allow this (Probity and Landmark have software that lets MTs see how a flagging was resolved, as well). Crow also noted that MTs should go through a quality auditing process on a consistent basis. I strongly feel the Quality Assurance monitoring process today is the best it has ever been, Crow said.

That's due in part to the technology that can allow MTs to follow documents through the quality assurance (QA) process. Kathy Eberle, who works in QA and is the operations supervisor for Landmark Transcription, explained that as soon as a document leaves QA's hands, MTs can immediately see the changes that were made. Some platforms make this difficult, however, and MTs and QA personnel may have to work harder to ensure that errors are explained. It is extra work to give them the feedback that they need, but in the end, it always pays off for QA because the MTs always become better for it, Eberle said.

Shortage or No Shortage?

Besides quality issues, another point brought to light by the MT study's preliminary results is the aging work force and, potentially, a looming work force shortage. There's no denying that the work force is on the older side—77 percent of respondents are older than 40. There is, however, room to debate whether or not there's an immediate crisis when it comes to a work force shortage. Dr. David commented that because there are no solid numbers on the actual number of MTs working, there's no way to determine if there is definitely a shortage.

Plummer disagreed with the conclusion that there's a work force shortage right now. He pointed out that Probity uses all domestic labor, and noted that all of the accounts he'd like to secure are either being transcribed in-house or by other MTSOs. When an account is landed, the MTs on that account typically join Probity, and the need for more workers is quickly met. Plummer called the work force shortage overplayed.

Eberle referred to the shortage as simply a shortage of qualified MTs, rather than of all MTs. She's noticing that many good MTs are leaving not just their positions, but the industry, and they're going back to school to start different careers. With quality MTs, we're truly lacking at the moment, Eberle added.

Hopkins echoed that, to a certain degree. He admitted it was hard to say whether or not the industry was facing a work force shortage, and said he doesn't see that happening at his MTSO, where his needs differ from some of the bigger transcription companies. At my level, where we are, we don't see a tremendous shortage of transcriptionists, Hopkins said.

He added that if he has an opening, he advertises it and that day, he'll wind up with 40 résumés in his inbox. I can usually fill a very specific position within a day, Hopkins said.

Crow, however, is worried about finding qualified MTs to support the growth of the industry. There aren't enough younger MTs to replace the retiring MTs within the next 10 years, she pointed out, and she strongly believes that there is a work force shortage. She added that new education programs are being put in place to produce good MTs, and many MTSOs are offering mentoring programs. Her company started a mentoring program 2 months ago for new MTs to help them garner experience in the field. This seems to be easing the labor shortage, according to Crow. We are very excited with the decrease in attrition numbers we are seeing already!

Salary Woes

While there may be debate over whether there's a work force shortage right now, one certainty in the MT industry is that wages aren't heading upward. In the survey, MTs reported varied personal incomes, with the majority, 72 percent, bringing home $10,000 to $50,000 annually. Another survey question asked about the number of wage earners in MTs' households, and 33 percent said that there is only one wage earner in the household--the MT.

Dr. David called the industry one of the only places where the laws of supply and demand don't work. There may be fewer transcriptionists and there's a greater demand for transcription services. [That] should mean that [MTs] get paid more, but their pay doesn't increase—if anything it goes down or stagnates—and so part of it is linked to how there's just no perceived value in what it is they do, he explained.

The industry as a whole needs to recognize that MTs spend a lot of time and money learning their craft, and if wages continue to drop or stagnate, potential MTs are going to look elsewhere—to other industries—for jobs, Hopkins pointed out. We want to see a viable pool of labor here in the United States, he said. If people can get better benefits and better wages at McDonald's, why wouldn't they go there? It's too hard to learn this business. It takes years of work to be fluent and professional.

Dr. David observed that there was a sense of unrest in the industry about salary issues. There's a number of things impacting [MTs], causing their wages to go down or be less robust in terms of going up, so it's definitely an issue that we've heard about, Dr. David said.

What's Next?

Overall, despite differing opinions on the results of the survey, everyone agreed that it could be a valuable tool in the industry. Crow said she hopes the study can lead to medical transcription being recognized as a degreed profession with mandated certification. I think once this is in place, the profession will be viewed by the younger people as a desirable health care position, Crow said.

Hopkins hopes the study highlights the fact that offshoring labor is doing what he called a disservice to the industry. I think if people focus on providing a livable wage to the transcriptionists with a reasonable package of benefits and a decent schedule, the labor pool will become deeper and broader because more people will start to come into the industry, he explained.

Plummer hopes to see more transcription programs set up at colleges to help school more domestic MTs. He also hopes the study helps companies adhere to better quality, because that could help the entire industry. Overall, he found the preliminary results to be valuable, and he noted that the industry is ever-changing. It's a dynamic study, too, because it's like painting the Golden Gate Bridge—by the time you get done, it's time to do it again, Plummer said.

Lynn Jusinski is an associate Editor with ADVANCE.

Nasty, rude, unprofessional.

I spent most days watching TV because there was supposedly no work, and when I quit they screwed me out of the money that they agreed to pay to ship their equipment back.

You need to get a life.....
I guess you had a bad experience, but that says nothing for the more than 400 MTs who are happy at OSi. I don't understand why you spend so much time running down a company instead of being a productive citizen. What you give comes back to you in the future. NEGATIVE, NEGATIVE, NEGATIVE.....I hope you are happy in your life because the reflection here shows some real issues you probably need to work on.
Get a life.
I too have "worked" for them, as a slave I might add.  I work my tail off and do not get paid what I should.  You, apparently a company suck up, get paid what you deserve.  Some of us do not.  You are not in the know.  I am looking elsewhere as we speak because I cannot and WILL NOT take it any more.  Get a life.  It is not just me as other people have the same complaints.  Unless you WALK in our shoes just SHUT UP.