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Serving Over 20,000 US Medical Transcriptionists

Wages in general

Posted By: KMS on 2008-11-10
In Reply to:

In looking over *** jobs, under the pay/compensation it seems everyone is putting "competive wage/compension".  Can anyone give me some idea of what that means....I am currently getting 8.5-10 cents for IC work.  I have 10+ years and made it at Healthscribe for 5+ years, which was definitely the worst work ever.  Can I do better?  I had my CMT and let it expire years ago.   

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$25/hr. = Low Wages?
I think at $25 per hr. I'm making a bit more than the manager of the French Fry Department at Mickey D's...
QA wages
Anyone out there have an idea of what a QA person should be paid per hour if working at home?
If you keep abreast with current events/news pertaining to the economy you will find that ours is not the only profession whose wages have not increased from levels in the 1990s. It is a lot of people as well who have to leave their homes to go to work for maybe the same that we make every day.
I am not putting you down but if you have been in this business for 20 years and have been reading this board  --give me a break you should be able to project what you will be earning especially if you have had your own accounts.  Especially if you have seen your wages go up and down, cannot believe you are asking this if -- like I said -- you have been in this business 20 years. 
I don't know about anyone else but I make the same amount of money if not more doing VR than I used to doing transcription, at least when there's work.  Lately the middle to end of the week I have nothing to do!  I personally am only doing this while I finished my bachelor's that I needed to apply to grad school which I start this fall when I'll quit.  I don't think that VR will ever replace MTs entirely because it just is too important to have perfect medical records and VR just isn't perfect especially since doctors do dumb things like talk to other people, correct themselves, mumble, etc.
Just know from my experiences in the last 25 years that doctors are notoriously CHEAP... Do the best you can and if you can't get as much or more money than you are making now, I'd stay where you are. Just my humble opinion. Been there, done that many times.
Wages also depend on where you are located. In house jobs and small independents are going to pay less in rural and struggling areas because they can. In rural areas jobs also depend on who you know. They would rather pay a untrained local rather than a trained outsider. Speaking from the voice of experience.
the wages were no more than they sm
are now when I started, the books were just as expensive. you buy one at a time and build from there. A good reference library is a MUST in this business. If you can get by with the internet search I guess that's ok, but I see people who are not searching at all.

I think 90% of the questions would be answered if folks would invest at least in a Medical Phrase Index. Sorry but its part of the job.
What no one says is that MT wages are considerably lower in rural areas and small cities. Do not be specific but it would help if geographic locations, were mentioned by posters if making more.
Biller wages
Can someone give me a ballpark figure of how much a biller would get that has no experience? I've been offered a possible job, and I got a feeling they are going to ask me how much I expect to make.
I don't think cutting wages is against the law.
Not paying overtime for employees, inappropriate classification of statutory employees, etc., those items fall under DOL.

If cutting wages was a crime, then the airlines, factories, hospitals, virtually all businesses would be under "investigation" and in grave trouble.

What are you trying to accomplish with your post? Just put information out there about a company you won't name? Wanting advice? Truly, I don't understand what you are wanting in reply.

radiology wages
If you are thinking of working for a large teaching hospital where they have 10 page Neurointerventional reports, large MRIs and CTs , etc, you will surely find yourself regreting working for per page.  I currently make $200+ per day doing radiology.  Today I did 112 reports and tho I won't see my exact lines until tomorrow I know I am over the $200 mark. You do the math.   Last month I pulled in $4000.
here's an even better link to see ALL about wages in USA
Slave Wages
I dont know who you work for but I make about $25-30 per hour. I work two jobs and 10-12 hours a day and on weekends and I make between $6000 and $7000 per month. I know that is excessive for hours but I am trying to pay off my house, car, etc and I am spoiling my 3 kids rotten!!

I type radiology, which I believe is the easiest and fastest to learn and type.
yearly wages

Last year had small MTSO two part-time IC's working for me, worked as employee parttime in clinic.  Worked 50 hours per week.  Made -- myself not counting what my IC's brought in -- $62 K.  Starting June 1st, quit the employee position -- divorce attorney fees paid off, no IC's and keeping my 4 accounts,  will work 25 to 28 hours per week and make approximately 40K from these four accounts per year.  If I get stuck and need more will do overflow for another MTSO.   But too many headaches and time to take some time for myself.  Looking forward to it.


Cannot bellieve wages.

Many companies now only want to pay 6.5 to 8 CPL.  This is even for seasoned MTs.  Even ICs are not offered much more compensation.  I have friends working at WalMart making more than some MTs.  If you type 200 LPH at 7 cpl that is $14.00 an hour, but the health insurance is very expensive at these companies.  You must have over 98% on QA scores, but they don't want to pay more for quality and experience.  Plus many jobs are IC and you have higher taxes.  I feel that wages have been falling steadily in the past years and continue to fall.  No wonder there is a shortage of experienced MTs (so I hear).  More likely it is a shortage of experienced MTs that want to work for such low wages and no raises in the future.

falling wages...
Unfortuntely, it is true, falling wages for MTs and experience plays not part in it.  But, there is a reason for it....as we all are aware, hospitals have chosen to cut their debt by outsourcing medical transcription to India for 1/4 the cost it would be to pay us here in the states.  Let's face it...MT jobs here in the states will soon be absolete, and thinking about the wages ever getting better, forget.  My advise is for all MTs to seek another source of income before it is too late....i.e. perhaps going back to school or seeking one of the higher paying jobs or at least equal to medical transcription such as Walmarts, Meijers, restaurants, etc...and eh...even get medical benefits, vacation time, etc....I currently receive none of that from my employer and was also told to take a pay decrease as of this 12/02...along with everyone else, so was paying us 10 cents per line, but little trick to that, lines are 70 characters per line with spaces included....everyone does 65 characters with spaces...now from 10 cents to 9 cents and 70 characters per line...hmmmm, I figure I am making 8 cents a line now.  Yes indeed, I am out of transcription after 25 years coming this income tax refund check.  Transcription has become a degrading job!
quality vs wages

While I do agree that there is a vast majority of MTs who are of extremely poor quality, there also are very high-quality, well-seasoned MTs like myself who are tired of making the same wages we made 10-15 years ago.  If there is such a discrepancy in our work quality and ethics, these corporations (who, by the way, are not slacking at all in their 6-figure income pockets!!!!) should pay MTs based on quality and experience, not just experience alone. 


I remain,


quality vs wages

I keep hearing about low wages
Even 8 cpl at 200 LPH is 16 dollars an hour, which is not a bad wage, and that is what many of the large services pay, plus you get benefits and get to stay home. No high gas prices (3 dollars a gallon or more in places).
I don't do that much of it but my wages have pushed me
Those wages posted below seem
Why all the complaining about low wages? And we have the option of saving gas, etc., working at home. I don't get it. If so many are making even over 30 or 35, and up to 60 thousand, what is the problem? I would love to make 40 thousand a year. I would be totally comfortable on that, but don't make that. But it is my own fault, I let other things interfere with my work (especially family). I am so busy taking care of my family, it cuts into my production.
hospital wages
I'm testing at a local midwest hospital.  Does anyone know what fair wages are for a newbie at a hospital.
For anyone that is an IC can you tell me why your wages earned are not the same as what your are cr
my accountant explained this but I cant remember the reason we dont get the full amount of credit and can you tell me what percentage we dont get credit for.
But for the same wages/benefits?
I've never seen anyone end up making more when they transfer from a hospital to a service. Its just part of the general downslope of wages, technology and globalization. Always keep Plan B.
Wal Mart wages
I worked there at a little more than minimum wage but most unskilled businesses pay only minimum wage. The scheduling is bad but no worse than any other shift work. Also unless you have worked there you have no right to put down Wal Mart.
Yes, that's true regarding wages...
being stagnate, but I tend to disagree that the 'average' cost is between 11-13 cpl (I think that's what was quoted).  I believe it is quite a bit higher than that, more in the range of 15-18 cpl or even higher.  At any rate, I cannot see how wages can go any lower than they are now.  I really enjoyed Julie's recent blog post regarding the curriculum forum (I'm sure you had a chance to read that).  I think she was right on regarding the future of MT.
Then DON'T work for "newbie" wages
If you were better, you'd be making more. Bottom line.

Slow people do not make money.

Bad attitude people get less work/jobs.

Good MTSOs do not hire poor MTs.

Why are you griping. It's your own doing. Life is what you make of it. If you deserved more, you'd be making more.

Type faster, make more.

Start your own business, make more.

Qualify for a good MTSO, make more.

If you're not earning it, the reason lies with YOU.
with cost of living going up and MT wages

How much do you think you would need to make a good living.  Meaning enough to cover all bills, enough to put some away for a rainy day, and enough to play, like dinners, hobbies, maybe a weekend getaway twice a year.  Be realistic.  I'm thinking for me, since i'm single, 50k a year. 

Second question.  If you hadnt gotten trapped in MT, what profession do you see yourself in maybe even earning way more than you can imagine, doing what you love?  For me, it would be psychotherapist. 

anyone???  ANYONE ???

Rural America wages
Last year interviewed for two transcription jobs. Neurology office $13.50, hospital $16.00. (the most I have ever been offered) I was offered the neurology position, but declined and the hospital job was given to someone with less experience, i.e. less $$$, they were hoping to add an addition MT on, but did not. I have over 15 years multispeciality office transcription experience including running my own business for 10+ years. I basically learned on the job, sort of fell into transcribing 20 years ago. I am also a Certified Medical Assistant (silly me, actually went to school for that), I have worked in physicians office over the past 20 years part-time doing medical assisting and transcribing and worked my way up to $11.50/hr. Unfortunately in the office MAs are being replaced by regular high-school graduates, $7.00 per hour, etc, and of course they can do transcription too.. ha ha. Since I live in a rural area the opportunities are limited and each position would require a lengthy commute and with high gas prices that is just crazy, so I decided to go employee with national. Since I get paid by production I can make more $$$ that way overall but the cpl rate is not nearly what it should be, you just keep working harder for the $$$. I would not recommend anyone get into this field by choice as technology will eventually whittle us away to almost nothing. If you want medical, go for the top.. doctor, RN, nurse practitioner, PA, etc. Decent wage and some respect, too.
If you think you are working for slave wages now...

Medical transcription is not your field.  We work for slave wages and have to compete with offshore transcriptionists who work for next to nothing. 

You will need to have an extensive medical knowledge, be willing to constantly purchase new equipment and reference books, and for all of that you get paid worse than a Wal-Mart greeter.  Wages consistently have been going down, not up. 

If you have a bachelor's degree, I would look into other fields if I were you. 

The only way I would recommend this field to someone is if they are handicapped or have an ill child or something that forces them to work from home.  Aside from that, I wouldn't recommend it. 

But you see, that's the problem. The lower wages go in the US, (sm)
the less any of us want to pay for things. But when you're on a limited budget and can't buy things any old time you want, one way to save money is to buy QUALITY. Then it LASTS. I may buy a couple cheap T-shirts at Ross that were made in Bangladesh, but I know they're expendable. I'll end up shrinking them the first time I wash them, and then use them as dust rags. But if I'm buying a coat, or a dress, or a CAR, then I go for quality. Even if it means waiting longer to get it, because then it will last, ultimately saving money in the long run. If I have to pay more for things (like gas, groceries, rent, etc.), then I demand a higher wage. If I don't get it, I look for an employer that will pay it. Too many people in this country (and especially offshore!)"settle" for the crappy wage just to get their foot in the door. Sometimes it's just better to go look for a different door.
Another example of the poor wages and long
hours MTing is a waste of time.
they will continue to offer low wages because there is always SOMEONE who will take it!
Sounds like they are cutting wages.
They want us to type for free.
And don't forget that 30% of your IC wages need to go for taxes, too. nm
The illegals also can work at these low wages because
they live 5 or 6 families to a house. Every time you hire illegals (and if a job is bid at half what an American can do it, they ARE illegal) you are contributing to the destruction of America. Have you ever read any reports of what its like to live in a neighborhood with illegals? It rapidly declines into garbage and filth. This is the only way these people know to live. They do not care to assimilate into our society. They would rather we degrade down to their level. Enjoy that money you save. May you also enjoy a few of these families coming to YOUR neighborhood.

Oh, and don't think they just live in low income areas any more. Nah, they are spreading into the McMansion neighborhoods. 7 or 8 families per house can afford to live there, and Bank of American is oh so happy to loan them the money. Ain't American great?
I totally agree. The wages go down, but yet
experience and more and more of your own equipment.  For example, why would I have an FTP (have to pay monthly for that) and work for an MTSO that pays 7 cpl and wants the work back in 12 hours?  Hello?  How am I making any money?  It is more like I'm putting money in someone's pocket for near nothing in return.  Then, on top of it all, have many years of experience and hit the ground running.  I'm fed up also with the MTSOs that want you to do their ESLs.  If you pay me 7 cpl as an IC with no benefits and want 12-hour turnaround, he or she had better be the easiest dictator there is from here to there.  OKAY, I THINK I'M DONE NOW! 
Maybe they're not just counting wages

Maybe whoever comes up with these figures is counting in the savings of not driving to work and buying office attire, the tax write-offs of having a home office, etc.  Then they lump it all together and come up with that figure?

Or else they have multiple jobs and work 7 days a week and that's total income.

Or maybe the CEO's came up with the figure that that's what an MT would make if the service wasn't playing the middleman.  Maybe that's how much they actually make off each MT a year.

who is requesting them to garnish your wages SM
I am an office manager and do the payroll.  I get letters from soc. sec., IRS, and even child support.  The employee has to comply with the letter.  I am usually sent a form to fill out starting with employees gross pay then they allow for some deductions then they want a % of what is left over.  They do not require you to notify the employee.  They want at least 1 cut from the employee's check before they quit.  Which happens just about every time, as soon as they see the garnishment, they quit the next week.  I live in MA so I'm not sure it is the same where you are. 
Advice on negotiating wages...sm
First off let me say that talking about money in general makes me a little uncomfortable. Please don't take this as me wanting to tell everybody how much money I make. On that note, I need some advice.

My husband and I are moving to a new area and I need to find a job. I have been offered an in-house full-time hourly wage transcription job. The cost of living in the area we are moving to is higher than where we are right now, but not by much. I make $16.14 an hour at my current in-house job and I am going to try for between $17 and $18 for this job. Does that sound reasonable? They have been looking for someone for this job for 6 months and really need me. Plus, the manager who hired me sounded really excited about offering me the job.

I am not sure how to go about negotiating my wage. I really need the job, but I don't know what amount I should accept. Can anybody give me some advice on this?

Thank you guys so much. Its nice to know that I can come here and know that I will get honest opinions!
Wow! This must be the only line of work where the wages

Another reason why our wages keep dropping...
Wages per hour and anually
That was a statistical data of MT charges per hour whether its office or at home. Wages for per hour and annual comparison for all the states.
In general
All caps and no abbreviations.  Headings for PE and ROS underneath.  Account specifics may differ.
In General....

An employer cannot set a specific schedule for an IC. This link addresses the issue here :


An excerpt fron the site above notes :

"According to the IRS, workers are employees if they must comply with the employer's instructions about their work, receive training or direction from the employer, provide services that integrate into the employer's business, render their services personally (can't subcontract), have a continuing working relationship with the employer, must follow set hours of work, work full-time for the employer..."

 As is noted in the site linked above , the consequences for the employer are quite severe if the IRS determines that the company actually was treating you as an employee rather than an IC.


In general,
in a given occupational group the upward pressure that unions place on wages and benefits has the net effect of raising the income and standard of living of poor folk up to the level of middle class folk while the absence of unions tends to drag the income and standard of living of middle class folk down to the level of poor folk. That upward pressure on wages and benefits not only helps union members but everybody else working in that occupational group. Without the organized upward pressure, wages will sink like a rock.

Can you afford to work for India wages (sm)

Don't even listen to people trying to sell you a class, study for something with a future.

I did formal training and MT was pretty good for a while, but now I wouldn't recommend this career to my worst enemy!

Yes, that's what we make, executive wages....finally...
somone gives it a label...10 cpl = executive wages. I'm going to go out right now and order my first boat on my 10 cpl and book a trip around the world....yep, cause I make EXECUTIVE WAGES. And with all that is left over I am going to feed the starving children around the world, then, with my executive wages, I am going to start a homeless shelter right here in my hometown, then, with what is left over from my executive wages, I'll have no problem paying for my son's college education, heck, I make EXECUTIVE WAGES....wooo-hoooooooooo, Saks Fifth Avenue here I come!!!!! HAHAHA...just kidding, couldn't resist...lighten up!
A perfect exampled of why wages are so low in our profession currently. sm
Too many lazy, or inefficient MTs out there. Especialy those trying to break into the field and expect to have the knowledge and skills equivalent to that of a veteran MT. Sorry to say, this mindset has ruined it for the profession, particularly those valuable, experiences MTs who are offered .07 to .08 per line. However, I refuse to work for under .10 per line with 20+ years experience. But in their defense, I can understand why companies have lowered their rates to compensate for the standard of work out there. In your case, I'd take a high hourly rate of pay on an editing position. This way, you can more easily tolerate the garbage given to you. Good luck.
Low wages? I make approx $60K a year at