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Serving Over 20,000 US Medical Transcriptionists

work ethics -- not just this profession

Posted By: babe in the woods on 2007-11-02
In Reply to: Long, but just had to say it ..sm - Maggie M

you will find there are those kind of people in any given profession.  Also you never know one's background and you cannot compare apples to oranges.  Providing wisdom for someone is far better and more professional and makes you the bigger person. 

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you said it. Great work ethics these MTSOs. We should charge a retainer. That (sm)
would stop some overhiring.
You're on to me Dr. Phil. Wanting to work in a profession
where my pay is not being cut month to month is so wrong. Please don't take my funnin' the wrong way. I'll try to use my powers better from now on.

speaking of ethics

Can someone tell me how they would handle a situation in which the TASP you are typing on is also an MTSO. I was told initially they were not a transcription company, and later found out (thank you internet) they are indeed.  I would like to keep competition close, but that is pushing it.

They offshore and lie about it, their ethics
don't exist, no DD unless they changed it again.   I don't know anything about the radiology account though. 
Sounds like she has the same ethics as a -
manager I once had. She'd disappear into her office for hours at a time, and behind her locked doors it turned out she had quite the little ebay business going. Never lifted a finger, otherwise. I was so glad to hear she finally lost her job.
Thanks for the morning lesson on ethics.
There's no law against that, goodness. Poor ethics but
What happened to loyalty and ethics?
You sold out! You are a coward and you are weak. You are also a thief.

Question on Ethics on this Company
sincere question, not busting or kidding here. Is it legal for an MTSO to come on here and either start a thread praising their company, but pretending they are just an MT, or, is it legal for an MTSO or upper management to come on here and reply to posts asking questions of a company, again pretending they are just the MTs and giving their -- honest -- praises for a company. I ask this because I know for a fact that there is a current thread on here where this is happening, and I suspect it happens more than we all could guess.  The problem I have with it is that this particular company keeps getting painted as a dream place to work, and NOT by the MTs, when it is a true nightmare in reality.  So victim after victim after victim, including me, fall for these lies, which is truly what they are.  I know this is not ethical, but not much we can do with MTSOs and ethics these days. I know MTs can be threatened by MTSOs never to post something negative on here, for fear of repercussions, libel, slander, etc. But what about the shoe on the other foot?  If we know that a company is on here posing as an MT and lying right thru their teeth, or keys, can they get in trouble for it? Because I for sure would love to pursue this on at least the company where I know for a fact this is standard protocol.  Is there any monitoring agency or licensing agency or anyone who we could formally complain to about these practices, as to me its true fraud.  Any ideas? The MTs need all the help we can get making informed HONEST decisions, and this  lying garbage has got to stop. 
Ethics? On an anonymous forum? (sm)
It's too much to hope for wanting people to be ethical on an anonymous forum. Just take everything you read with a grain of salt and post what you know to be the truth whenever you see flagrant bull being posted by unscrupulous people. Unfortunately, that's about all you can do. People do unethical stuff all the time in business. Sad but true.
It is a matter of ethics. I have been offered multiple jobs the last
year and have turned them all down because they offshore.  I stayed where I am because they didn't offshore.  TAT was a problem and I was getting weary of having to work every weekend, even though I did my lines during the week and then some, but I have days where I'm short 300-400 lines.  Do you think they got qualified MTs by going to India?  I have done QA on a trial basis on offshore work and I have seen the quality that comes from there.  If they are going to have to do 100% QA, they can't they do a mentoring program or take a newbie fresh out of school?  I've quit at least one job (non-MT) due to the unethical practices of a company. 
This is completely backwards from applicant ethics taught in business school. (sm)
This was long before on-line applications were possible, but tradionally, applicants courteously follow procedures outlined by hiring company. Then you have a chance to ask your questions. And teachers advised you to have serious, respectable, and not focus too much on money or benefit issues until the employer reached the stage where they knew they were interested in you. Only then could you get into very polite, carefully worded money negotiations.

You are in a profession
of people who really are scrambling for work. It's not like you are a doctor or lawyer. You are a typist and so stop being so uppity about it. your profession. I thought you had friends and that you are a mother, sister, niece.... get lost
Thanks everyone! Due to this profession and
all the garbage that goes along with it, I have accepted a position outside of transcription.  Pay is better and bennies to boot!  It's sad to see what this profession has lead to .  The ungratefulness from MTSOs is growing by leaps and bounds.  Please no replies that.... the grass is not always greener, etc.  Been there, done that.... I'm very comfy with my decision.  I can always fall back on transcription -we are a dime a dozen whether we are seasoned or newbie (unfortuantely)!
This profession... SM

can be a rewarding profession, but definitely not an easy one.  There are waves of workflow, waves of pay, waves of anger, waves of joy, waves of guilt, waves of happiness, waves of sadness, waves with a shark lurking (like an ocean).  hehe

So what do we do in the ocean?  Go with the waves!  Surf's Up!!! 

MT isn't the only profession
As a coder, we often work around and in spite of. Their written documentation is just as bad as their dictation. One visit the patient has metastatic cancer, the next visit they have cancer in situ, then they have a history of cancer, etc., etc., etc. One visit HIV positive, next visit AIDS, next visit HIV positive. There is no consistency at all. They come in with a visit diagnosis of Diabetes type 1 but their office note says type 2. MTs have it rough but we're not the only one. I think anything in the HIM field meets these challenges. They're just in such a big hurry to whip through it that they don't pay attention. Most docs consider doing their documentation just too big a bother and scr__ the consequences.
And I think that anyone in this profession that has

in this year 2009, should automatically be a CMT; no test; no money; just grandmothered into a CMT.  I am only 38, but I've been transcribing for almost 20 years now and used to have to look every word up in a dictionary and didn't have Google or electronic spell checks to help me do my job.  I feel like I should already be a CMT and not have to take the test.

I also think the line rates are very low here lately especially for acute care work that requires evenings and weekends.  I know this profession is 24/7, but all MTs deserve more than 7 cpl to work nights and weekends as in any other profession, there is a shift diff that pays.

As far as the ist at the end of my title, I don't mind.  A transcriber, in my opinion, sounds more like the name of a machine or office equipment.  The ist I feel is derived from the term specialist, so add what you like before the ist and that's what you get; it is not belittling and definitely not feminine when you consider how many male physicians there are in society today.  Furthermore, I'd take a male dictator over a female any day of the week. 

Okay, I'm done...  for whoever cares... 

This is the only profession ......
that the longer you are in it and the more experienced you are, the less you get paid.
If you are in this profession you have to
accept them, they are part of it whether you like it or not, or as you say - get out.
MTs getting out of the profession
I agree with that assessment. My local technical college is discontinuing their MT program because of the changes being made. So what is going to happen is that there is going to be a huge paucity of qualified people who can accurately transcribe and edit the few remaining necessary functions that they now perform and they will then be at a premium and the price will go up. Then once the medical providers figure out that the way they keep records (EMR point and click and VR), while they may be expedient and cheap, are not living up to the hype and hence will get them into trouble legally (due to sloppy entries and slipshod data entry by the physicians themselves), they will reassess the need for those in our profession and go looking for us again. Perhaps we will be there but probably not.
to have a real profession
So before you going calling anyone dumb.... think about just how skilled you aren't. MQ'ER move along.
Don't let this sour you on this profession. sm
There are great companies out there and horrible ones. What was horrible for you might be a good fit for someone else.
the problem with this profession..

is..... it is very ill defined.  nothing is measured, nothing is objective, at least consistently.  7 cpl is equal to 10 cpl somewhere else.  a few examples.  people don't say they are acute care MTs to annoy you, there are a million different scenarios and a whole lot of jargon being thrown around, and i guess i'd be wondering what a person is called that does acute care but no ops.  a whole half a company where i work are like that.  so.. uh...see.  every scenario is different... which is a major part of the problem.

but, in response to your note, i disagree with a whole lot of it, and it's due mainly to what i say above.  i chose to work at home because i dont want to work at an office so i am sure as heck not interested in turning this environment into the very thing i left.

any, may i submit to you, and many others speaking in these forums.... it's fine to express opinions; it's not heard with much regard when it is touted as fact.  you see divas.  i see an industry of people who have been taken advantage of like no other.  there is no accountability from the doctor, the hospital, or the MTSO... it all runs down hill to the MT.  laws are blatantly ignored and policies rarely written with any definition.  if you want to compare the way we work to traditional offices, when was the last time you worked at an office where you worked 10 hours to get in 8, and you only got paid for some of the work, but not all.  it's come to be the norm here.

some heavy duty revamping needs to take place... and i'm working on it.  everyone put their thinking caps on about what's really at the root of these problems, and stop arguing for crying out loud. never seen so many arguers in my life.  it's apples and oranges that everyone is arguing over.... little bites of fact taken out of context.  no big picture.

i will be back over the next few months to hear them.  let's get down and serious and fix this chaos. look underneath what got you ramped up.. the ramping isn't valuable, but figuring out what is driving it is.  i say we start a revolution.

You are a traitor to this profession.
What you are doing is the reason why MTs are in the fix they're in.  You are selling US out for profit.  Pray tell, how do you plan to ensure patient confidentiality in the jungle? 
I would! This profession is all but dead
If we were men, I seriously doubt our profession
that is why the profession is swirling sm
around the toilet bowl because no one will stand up and tell the truth about these companies AND the ones who do stand up and tell the truth get blasted. Hey, if no one wants to list and wants to sit back and watch it happen without a fight, then don't gripe when its over!
The nosedive this profession took was because
meaningless little spats and email wars between MTs.
Or you could choose to look for a different profession, sm
where you are not so demoralized that you feel (jokingly or not) that you are a victim.
Do you really think that this profession requires MORE than others? sm
Come on, nurses, teachers, most other *professions* have to keep CEs updated, etc. Wages are stagnant in *most* fields right now, not just this one.

If you feel like a victim, find something that makes you happier and feel empowered. That's not anything but truth.
A disgrace to the profession???
Years and years ago before I had much experience I took a job for 6.5 cpl.  I had no choice.  However, it was an easy clinic account that I could do 1800-2000 lines a day.  I only worked 30 hours a week so the $16 - $18 an hour was not bad back then.  The same would be true today for a newbie.  It may be the only thing they can get until they gain more actual working experience.  Kidding right? - Do you remember being a newbie?  They are a disgrace to the profession?  Could it be perhaps that you are the MT who keeps going from board to board, posting under different aliases, and just dogging anyone's post that you can.  What kind of witch hunt are you on?  YOU are calling someone a disgrace to the profession?   
VR, Transcend, MT profession, etc. Long msg

Difficult as it will be, it's time we, as a profession, unite and put our collective foot down on this crap.  We are quickly running out of time to be able to do anything about this stuff, and this may, in fact, be our last shot at making a difference.  Therefore, my suggestion for those being replaced by a technology that still can't even do the work without our help is to immediately look for work with other companies that are not yet going to strictly editing positions through VR, and do it quickly and as a mass exit.  Any company experiencing a mass exit like that I don't think can survive it.  There are a lot of companies looking for good, experienced transcriptionists, so the time is right for making an immediate move.  Such a move will send the message that giving our work away is synonymous with losing accounts.  By watching the aftershock of such a response from the MTs, other companies will hopefully think twice about following the same path.

The point is, if we don't strike a plan and do something, and quick, we are all going to be looking for another line of work anyway. My position is, if the doctors want to use VR, then get it right. If I am going to have to hang back in the wings and fix it for them for less pay and longer hours, then my answer to that is, no thanks; do it yourself. The point is, of course, at least for right now, they can't do it themselves and don't have the time to do it even if they could. This is the best opportunity any of us will have to make a stand (and a statement) while keeping the pain we individually experience as a result at a minimum. Test for another company and move on as quickly as you can. If a company engaging in this cut-throat activity gives no notice (as the posts suggest happened in the case with Transcend concerning wage and work cuts), then don't feel obligated to give any notice that you are leaving.  If you are working for a company that is considering such a move in the future and has stated as much, then make plans to move on right now, and when you have secured another position, let them know you are leaving and why.

You can't wait on this. Don't give them time to figure anything out. Just leave them high and dry the way they eventually intend to do you (us). They're doing what they are doing because they want to be richer. You'll be doing what you do because you need to survive and put food on the table. BIG DIFFERENCE!!

The results will be that the other companies that are looking for good help will get all that they need, which will make their accounts happier because TAT is being met like never before.  In turn, the companies that experience such a mass exit will have their accounts looking around for a new home because of the backlog that develops, and that in turn will cost them money rather than such a move having made them money as originally thought. And, where do you suppose those fleeing accounts will have to go? To companies that are well staffed because they don't take their MTs for granted. This will give such companies a big boost economically, which will be yet further incentive to maintain a happy work force and not be willing to cut the throats of their work force when it comes to work availability. 

This will not prevent VR from continuing to progress and develop, but it will stop the tide that is beginning to take shape and perhaps even shift it once the doctors and the companies realize that, if they are going to use it, they are on their own because we will not help them put us out of work. The technology is still not to the point where it can stand on its own yet, so those that would see MTs out of work will have to rethink their position for the time being, and that in turn will give our profession more time to find a way to organize and make a permanent stand for the benefit of our own self-preservation as an industry. They're slowly pulling the rug out from under us, and we are just standing here letting them do it because we don't see how there is anything we can do about it. But there is something we can do.  We just have to buck up and do it.

Don't tell me this is idealistic either. That's all I have heard from fellow MTs when it comes to making any kind of a stand. It's only idealistic because you aren't willing to do what it takes to change it. If we stand together and refuse to go along with this, these companies will have to rethink their position. If we wait until they are in a position to survive without us, then they will do just that. Either way, we're all going to be out of a profession anyway, so why not make a stand right now while there's a chance it could make a difference, especially when there is still work to be had in this field with other companies that have not yet sold us out.

Well if you've seen the profession erode so much,
That's one of the biggest eroders!  And you act as thought the AAMT only does what its membership wants.  Bull hoggy!!  It does whatever it darn well feels like doing--whatever will line its pockets!
I have 10 years in this profession and have a different viewpoint
I started out with a small MTSO doing clinic only and got bored after 5 years so struck out on my own after waiting out a hostile takeover by that big bully company and the clinic going back to original group.  I then learned just how unstable this business can be.  In the next 3 years had my own hospital accounts and worked for about 4 nationals - had very good experiences.  I then QA'd for a very stable company who decided to get out of the MT business and sold their accounts to a company who had their own editors.  For 4 months I looked for a stable company, I tested and interviewed and made comparisons. You would not in your wildest imagination believe what is out there - I kid you not.  I will not go into all the horrible details - you can either believe me or not.  But some of the posters have real valid points here and I for one appreciate their comments.  I take the good with the bad - realizing there are some sour grapes but that is to be expected.  All and all I think there is a pretty good and caring support system here and I appreciate it very much! :)  
There are single Moms in every profession.
You can't expect to work for a company holding the cards, and them pay you all of what they make when you want to be at home and it is not your account.  It belongs to the company paying you.  There's always the pavement to pound if you think you deserve the big bucks.  Can't have it both ways.  I don't think anything is just handed to anyone.  If the electric is going to be turned off, then there are programs out there to help.  I think if you fall within a certain salary range, you would qualify for assistance especially being a single Mom or Dad. 
this is where expierience in the profession kicks in. nm
I do accept ESL as part of the profession
I transcribed for them all the time.  Some of them are great.  What I asked was, is it fair to use an ESL like this particular one as part of the testing process, poor audio and all.  Maybe it is.  Maybe it represents the dictators they have on the account they are hiring for.  If so, no thank you.  While I do not mind turning out quality medical reports to the best of my ability, no - I am not doing it for free.  As much as I love the MT business, I am still here for a paycheck so yes, production and cpl does matter to the point that I would not want this particular ESL as my full time job.  Looking out for number one.
Then that MT needs to either find another employer or another profession
And the poster you're referring to has been rude and attempting to be a ringleader for some demented mass walk-out of her fellow MTs, so if I were you I wouldn't be too sympathetic to her cause. She just keeps changing her name and posting the same types of things over and over.

And would you HONESTLY sit there and let someone call you a liar or in management because you like your job or are good at it?

Sorry, but the poster who started this deserves whatever she gets. If she can't take it, she shouldn't be dishing it out.

Are you dense people? You are expendable and someone will be glad to work the weekends. No wonder most of you are in low paying jobs you are afraid to leave, you can't aspire to anything more! Women are crazy. How many male MTs are there who come here and complain on a daily basis?
The beauty of it is we DON'T HAVE TO FIND ANOTHER PROFESSION! sm
There are still hundreds of jobs out there that don't require this ridiculous schedule. The OP turned down the job! Why does this anger you so?? Because she refused to settle?? MTs settling for crappy pay rates, schedules, etc. is what has sent this job overseas. The majority that have sent their work overseas have also come back to the good ole American MT!
I stopped thinking of this as a profession
and now think of it as a job. Fortunately, in the days of when MTs were of value and were paid accordingly, I paid off my house and don't have that hanging over my head. If I had not, being single, I would not be able to pay my house payment today. No pay raise for so many years I can't remember and now seeing post after post about 7 cents per 65 character line and people taking these jobs, it will be more like community service.

I am making sure I put some money away each payday because when that day comes, I'm going to apply at Target or the local Goodwill. I really do mean that. I have worked for 26 years now doing this. I have a dozen years left to work before I can retire.

We were not overpaid when we were making money. We were paid accordingly.

As far as recommending this line of work to someone, that is something I never would do.
I stopped thinking of this as a profession
and now think of it as a job. Fortunately, in the days of when MTs were of value and were paid accordingly, I paid off my house and don't have that hanging over my head. If I had not, being single, I would not be able to pay my house payment today. No pay raise for so many years I can't remember and now seeing post after post about 7 cents per 65 character line and people taking these jobs, it will be more like community service.

I am making sure I put some money away each payday because when that day comes, I'm going to apply at Target or the local Goodwill. I really do mean that. I have worked for 26 years now doing this. I have a dozen years left to work before I can retire.

We were not overpaid when we were making money. We were paid accordingly.

As far as recommending this line of work to someone, that is something I never would do.
leave whereto? To another profession? Because...sm
VR is taking over the MT field and wherever one goes it is the same.
Yes, exactly!!! The entire profession will wind up being "dumbed-down"

to where anyone with a keyboard and software can do it.  It used to be that medical transcriptionists were required to have a great deal of knowledge to transcribe medical documents.  If they are reduced to being custodians, cleaning up the punctuation and doing odds and ends because the VR program already knows how to interpret the "big words," then anyone would be able to do this job, anyone.........anywhere in the WORLD!!!!!! 

Tell me, how many American MTs/editors are going to be left once we "fix" the broken machine that is replacing us all?

You make a WHOLE LOTTA SENSE, and it's becoming clearer and clearer that employment with smaller "mom and pop" companies who still believe in quality is the way to go. 

I firmly believe offshoring is ruining our profession
We are getting less and less money and less and less respect. This is a difficult job when you do it right. You have to have knowledge, skill and be conscientious. All of this is worthy of someone's money and respect but we just are not getting it. I have been jerked around so much that it has lowered my opinion of the industry in general. I think I am changing careers very soon.
Not only bringing suit, but our profession's tendency - sm
for it's members to behave like pirhanas towards one another whenever someone mentions something different. Yes, this topic IN GENERAL has been on the news before, but it needs to get more up-close and personal. To begin with, showing what MT really is, how it works, who does it and where, and how it integrates with their doctors, their insurance, and their healthcare, and just HOW MUCH of their personal, NON-MEDICAL information is really contained in their medical records. Then they might just START to care.
It's called building credibility for this profession.

I totally agree. I've been in the profession for
years and getting close to retirement...about 8 years to go. I know my job better than lots of people with CMTs.
Actually, you should be MORE amazed at the fact that the majority of our profession has been
outsourced and to add insult to injury, we are expected to survive on what is practially tantamount to Third World wages?  Not only that, but as a MT for the last 25+ years, I am livid about the fact that our medical information is in the hands of individuals outside of this country not to mention SS#, etc.  IMO that particular issue among others I have listed should be a legitimate cause for concern....
What other profession do you know of that doesn't give a yearly raise?
The MTSOs raise their rates each year . . . . . . . .