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Serving Over 20,000 US Medical Transcriptionists

types of keyboards

Posted By: Lisa in Upstate New York on 2009-04-26
In Reply to: keyboard - steady eddie

I just recently purchased a Logitech wave computer, switched from the ergonomic ones I have used for years.  This one was easy to adjust to, my spend is just as fast and yet the rest of the family can use it, they were so confused by the ergonomic ones.  I just want to know who makes a keyboard that the letters do not wear off, have had this one only a month or two and the L is just about gone along with the S, E and N almost unrecognizible.

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Anyone know what OEM means? Looking at keyboards to buy & there are some MS 4000 keyboards advertise
anyone have a clue?
These keyboards are designed after the original IBM keyboards that
have the "clicky, audible sound" when pressing the keys - not the hushed, soft, nonexistent touch & feel of the newer keyboards.
Think it depends on what you've learned on & "typed" on as to your preference regarding touch, sound feedback, etc.
When my original IBM keyboard was going on the blitz(1995),I searched far & wide for a company to repair such and/or replace it. This company has repaired such - several times. This company does offer clones of the original IBM that are very comparable to the original. They also have other keyboards available made by their company, but I have no personal knowledge as to their touch, etc.
As a side note, this company will repair most model keyboards for a very nomimal fee if you have a favorite you don't want to part with - ask for Jim Owens - he's a doll-babe !!
I know this company makes several of their own keyboards, but what I believe mdlfcrs is referring to is not known to the newer transcriptionists. In other words, the keyboard she/he and I are talking about is not ergonomic, soft-touch or mushy feeling. It goes back to the days of the typewriter - you heard it, you felt the keys - a totally different feeling compared to most "computer keyboards" -
I'm 45 and have done all types (sm)
of transcription. I did formal training for MT in 1998, after my training I was doing pretty well. Now that I am getting nothing but leftover, terrible dictators doing medical transcription, I make more money doing general transcription.
NOT planning on taking on anymore medical dictation since the offshoring got going. It has been a nightmare to find decent accounts, companies and decent dictators in the last year or so.
How come whenever someone types a lot of

lines in a day it is considered cherrypicking? I just finished my shift for the day and had 3897 lines. Did I cherrypick? No! I can't see what work I'm getting until it shows up on my screen. I worked a total of 11 hours with my 3 breaks figured in. Yes, I did work 2 hours OT but they asked for OT so I sat and worked. I can work steadily for 3-4 hours and then get up and stretch. I had no normals except the ones that I put in myself for the doctors. I've been doing the same accounts for about 8 years and have tons of "normals" for a lot of the doctors. Once in a while they will change their wording to throw you off course. The only doctors that slow me down nowadays are the new residents who must talk for no less than 30 minutes for each patient. Out of the 132 charts I transcribed, I had about 65% ESLs. Just because some people type a lot of lines in a day does not mean that they are a cherrypicker.

That's one of the things I hate about some nationals. You should NOT be allowed to see the other line counts of your fellow workers because all these accusations happens. If you see someone with a constantly high line count, you automatically assume they are getting all the "good" doctors when it is not the case with a lot of people. It may be true in some cases but you're lumping everyone with a high line count into one group.

There are these types in QA and in MT, too.
so who types it? they only way around that would be to outsource
and that seems ridiculous.
Report types.

Easiest-family practice.  Hardest-OB/GYN.

skin types
It does depend on the skin type and the type of laser machine they used. Many of them do not do darker skin. They all do tend to work better on lighter skins. I have dark hair due to a hormone imbalance my whole life since childhood. Dark hair on my arms, etc. Some laser brands of machine are better than others. Let me know if you decide you want information on the one I work for or I can give you the name of the top selling laser brand out there that I would recommend from what I know.
you can ask these types of questions
such as laborlawtalk.com

There are different types of USB pedals

There is Olympus, VEC, Infinity, many, many.  Look at the bottom of your pedal to get the code.  If it is an Infinity, you will see something like IN-USB1, or IN9B (for 9 pin) or IN-DVIUSB.  All the Infinity foot pedals work with ExpressScribe EXCEPT the DVI because it is a higher technology than is compatable with ES.  Run the foot control wizard on ExpressScribe to help it locate the foot pedal and recognize it so you can use it.  You may have to try all the COM ports on the wizard before you hit the right COM port and the foot pedal is recognized.  My Infinity foot pedal USB1 is recognized in ES as the _VEC_ if that helps you.

I have had to do the hand control thing and it is very frustrating and can make the test take 4 times longer than with a foot pedal.

There is a whole list of these types
of things I got through my MT training classes. To make the ' over the e in debride, you would do Alt + 233 on your number pad. Let me know if it works. good luck.
Others have other types of jobs?

Hi everyone,

Do any of you have other types of jobs besides MT, QA, Editing, etc. like me?? I just started another type of job for evenings to help out financially, and I like doing so.  I still do my main MT thing, but the other one is actually fun for me, and not just slaving away all day at a computer!! 

Work types
Has anyone ever quit a position because you get work types you were assured you would not have to do?  I absolutely despise discharge summaries and was told upon hire that I would not have to do them, there were plenty of other reports I could do, now I get big chunks of DS throughout the day, I never have liked them, I lose about 75-100 lines/hour doing them.  Does anyone else have this problem?  I am not a newbie, I just do not like discharges and get a real mental block, I think mainly because I get so tired of sitting while the dictator is trying to figure out what to say.
Work types
Yes, they all have to get done but I used to work for a company that you were given a certain work type all day long, and it either rotated or if there was one person who liked ds or op, they were routed to them - the work got done, the MT had more production, thus the company benefitted also, why take an MT who can do 300+ lines on everything but DS and put them on DS when you have people who do 150 on everything, including DS
work types
Most won't allow that.. Especially the ones that pay well. The one I work for requires you to be skilled in all ares, even radiology.. It is a great job.. Have them for 20 years and 10 years in the MT department working from home. Hospitals are the way to go.
other types of transcription

I have been doing medical transcription for about 5 years now and I am very interested in getting into other areas such as auto insurance claims, police reports, interviews, etc.


I was wondering if anyone has ventured into this area  -I would like to try something new but do not even know where to start.

Thanks for any advice!

I have had many different types of jobs s/m

from the lowliest to corporate level, and I take pride in all work that I do.  I do not find this profession in any way boring -- there is always something new to be learned and every case (usually) is different and fascinating to me.  Sometimes they make me laugh, sometimes they make me cry, but it is never boring!!.  I just get so frustrated with the regard that everyone else looks at this profession -- that because I work from home, it is not a "real" job, or that what we do is not important or significant.  This job requires a myriad of language and technical skills that I believe an "average" person could simply not do. I have done brain-numbing data entry, and this work is far, far more involved than simply transferring numbers or names into a format. 

Anyone who types enough lines
to survive on these days cannot be called a 'slacker'. No way.
What types of reports were they?

Did you leave a lot of blanks or guess?  Were you familiar with those work types?  Were the accents difficult?  Did you follow the BOS (BS)?

Of the 10 years' exp you have, is it well-rounded (including acute care and clinic).  Have you ever worked in house (in a hospital or clinic)?

Just some things to consider.  I wouldn't throw in the towel just because some national didn't like your test.  Consider a local service with specialties you are familiar with and ask the owner/QA person to help you with learning new ones.

Do you get choice of which report types are sent to you?
There are all types of cherry picking

Sometimes it's like the game of Monopoly - I'll trade you St Charles Place for Marvin Gardens. You take a couple of choice dictatators in exchange for doing a couple that other people have trouble doing.

Another example is giving a "good show." By that I mean ... there are 20 reports on the system - Two of them are 10 minutes each and the rest are 2 minutes each. You've got two hours to get the work done, so, you do all the small reports. Changes are it'll be the same amount of lines either way, but it's psychological for the client. They think they're getting more work back.

I remember years ago when I worked in a hospital. There was one doctor who sent me screaming from the room (he sounded like a deranged chipmunk). They hired a new gal who had no trouble doing him (she also had a lot more experience than me). She knew I hated him and said, "I'll go him if you let me down so-and-so." You betcha!! We were happy as clams. I got rid of the worst one, and she got to do her favorite one.

The truth of the matter is, I would speak with those in charge and explain the situation. Tell them how you feel (very frustrated). See what they can do/say. If they won't ... personally ... I update my resume and look elsewhere.

Then again, maybe I just have a lower tolerance level than others. 

The transcription manager types it.
Is my post about different types of glossaries
I agree - there are those types in every profession - SM
I was just making the point that we can't expect to make the same amount of money that a doctor does when he has gone to school for at least 8 years of his life to be an expert at what he does.........
Realistically with all work types
and various dictators, I average about 17.5 minutes per hour at the end of the day.  But the first few hours I'm still working with my coffee buzz, so it is a little more, maye 22-25.  I get a lot of 10-15 minute reports with a lot of dead air time, then will get a 2-minute report that is two pages long.  I could never go by minutes unless it is the same thing over and over again.
I think there are two types are care/discussions going on here(sm)

On the one hand there are the elder parents who are still very functional but maybe not able to live alone.  In that case I feel they should move in with the middle-aged children or vice versa. 

However, on the other hand, there are those elder parents who are no longer able to function and require 24-hour nursing care.  In this case, I think it would be better if they were in a nursing home setting where they could get the around-the-clock care rather than the children having to pay a private-duty nurse.   Yes, the elder parents, when they are young, provided for and took care of the children.  However, we're talking nursing care at this point.   And the other argument is:  How far do the middle-aged kids take the nursing care?  Do they get to the point where they're having to sell their house and belongings in order to keep the elder parents at home?  JMO

What types of procedures? I love doing

cardiac caths because most docs will say the same thing over and over, same for bypass grafting, just different grafts and locations.  All in all the procedures stay basically the same.  This also works for cardioverting, just change the joules where appropriate.  When I do a cath or other procedure for the first time. I will make a normal for it then make changes as they come along.  These procedures can be good for the line count!.  Also, in your short keys, make short cuts for left and right anterior descending, ejection fraction, end diastolic pressure, etc., you get the picture.  They will use these a lot. 

I have found that most of the time the more difficult dictators are the ones that will basically go word for word in dictating their reports.  Good luck! 

Talk to the doc about what types of screens are
time on the PC.  Also I was told that stigmatism is a common thing to have but a lot of people do not know they have it.  I wear glasses now, but I think my eyesight is getting worse from the looking at the screen as well.  You should probably take more breaks from the PC. 
Rate differential for job types
so, is it just me or are operative reports on the whole more difficult/time consuming than other types, like ERs or discharge reports?  Seems like a more thorough knowledge of anatomy, not to mention surgical equipment, is needed for ops...
Does anyone here type other types of transcription?
If so what type of transcription is it and how did you go about getting that type of work?
Basic 4 isn't one report, it's 4 different types. sm
H&P's, discharge summaries, op reports, and ....i'm blanking on the 4th, sorry.
Shorthand types 62%, I type 38%. nm
I am constantaly having trouble with the letters being worn off -- have been through 4 keyboards in the past two years -- any suggestions, though I know where the keys are, it looks funny when they are blank.

Jen, did you call about the keyboards? Anything I found said that Cirque is no longer in business, and when I went to the other site, found only the pads, not the keyboards. The original looks wonderful. If you find where it can be purchased, let us know.
Once upon a time, I used one of those split keyboards.  Considering buying one again.  Does anyone use one?  How does it compare over the longterm? 

It didn't take any time at all to get used to the GoldTouch in the tented position.  I bought mine off of ebay and am keeping my eyes open for another one, cheap, to have as a back-up. 

I have a COuntoured keyboard that I bought off Ebay. I have had it for a month or 2 but just havent had the time to work with it.  It seems kind of complicated to get set up.  The Goldtouch, I plugged into a USB port and off I went. 

I have seen and bid on all kinds of keyboards. They even have one handed one that resemble the top of a job stick.  One hand does it all.  And there are ones called Bats (I think) that are everything done by one hand.  I am trying to buy one of those kinda cheap. 

ALso, I have tried Dragon Naturally Speaking but the time to train it took too long.  It was quicker to type. 



I have no idea when I will be trying that out but can let you know.  If I lose your email I will post that I have tried it.  It looks to me like it is going to be like when you spell something out on the telephone.  So many clicks per number to get a certain letter. 

I have never had trouble buying anything off ebay.  I have seen new and used keyboards.  Mine have all been used but I always check the stats on the seller to see that history.  Also pay with PayPal so would have that as a recouse also if had problems.  And of course, I save all correspondence, etc, not just for ebay but any kind of cyber transcactions. 

Hi Anna, check out this website. http://office-ergo.com/12things2.htm I searched for Ergonomics on google, and came up with a ton of sites. Hope this helps.
Keyboards - sm
I am a keyboard snob.  I only use mechanical keyboards (which are usually older keyboards).  They have the "click" that comes from the spring action making connection.  My preferences are Magitronic, Keytronic,  or (best) NMB.  These keyboards have "sliders" that make typing a joy.  The older IBM M keyboard is also mechanical action, but I find the keys rather harder to type on.  I like a clicky, soft touch mechanical-action keyboard.  I usually buy them on ebay - some are rather expensive, some are cheap - all are old and all are mechanical action! 
I had a Kensington keyboard that I bought I think at Comp USA, somewhere more than 3 years ago.  It was not really expensive, and didn't have a split keyboard, but had slanted keys, which I thought were quite a bit easier to use and I really liked it.  The letters didn't wear off, and it was working fine until I dumped a whole glass of diet orange pop on it about a month ago.  A whole glass, that is, except what went all over my desk and the wall.  I took it all apart, rinsed everything out, set it out in the sun to dry well, put all the little rubber dothingies back in place on each key, and have a keyboard that doesn't work anymore.  Sigh.  I would buy another one just like it, and hope to find one as soon as I can stop putting money in other things, like furnace repairs.
I have bought some of the best and the longest they last is 6 to 8 months witout starting to come off.  So I buy a new keyboard about every 12 to 15 months as it also looses its bounce.   Guess that comes with doing 45,000 to 50,000 lines per month but you would think that they would make them so that they last a little longer.
I have this problem as well and was told by Dell tech support that it is the grease on the fingers, i.e, lotion, eating while working etc that makes the letters wear off. I have gone through 6 keyboards in 2 years and now I put clear finger nail polish on the keys and this has worked thus far.  You must do this prior to using the new keyboard first, as in no greasy fingers. 
RE: Keyboards
I use the Microsoft Wireless Natural Multimedia Keyboard and it is wonderful. Love it. I don't use the shift key on the right either apparently.
Keyboards - sm
I have tried all three, and always go back to the Maxium. The Goldtouch was too loud and cumbersome. I could not get use to the Freestyle, but love the Maxium. If you decide on one, and I have the Goldtouch in my computer closet I would sell you...email if interested.

I agree about what a difference the keyboard can make!!

I looked at the split keyboards, but my hands are kind of small so I went with a WAVE keyboard. 

It is made by Logitech and you can find it at Office Max and Staples.  It is wireles and came in a combo with a wirless mouse for about $75.  It has well paid for itself!! for me!


About trying out keyboards

About the keyboard advice previously given, when you try them out, can you tell you like them right away or do they all feel a bit awkward?  I'm just wondering how to know what I'll like best when picking one out.

Thanks for your ongoing help! 

Keyboards I tried out

I looked at keyboards yesterday and tried them (pretended to type) in the store.  The ones they had with each hand's keys father apart (which is what I thought would be best) were big, bulky, with keys that stuck up too high and just felt awkward.  The one that felt best was smaller ... more in order of a normal keyboard but curved a bit to accommodate more natural hand position.

Do you think this is an accurate assessment of what would work best for me, or would one get more used to the other type?  Are there split keyboards that don't seem so bulky and awkward from the start?

Thanks.  I really want a new keyboard, but I'm afraid I'll buy something I regret.  Just not sure how to tell what's best. 

I've been an MT for over 20 years and my shoulders and arms are feeling starting to feel it. I've been using a MS ergo keyboard for years now, but would like to invest is a super good keyboard. Anyone have one you particularly like? Anyone try one of those keyboards where you type sideways? TIA

I have narrowed my selection of new keyboards down to the Microoft Natural Wireless 7000 and the Logitech cordless.  I need speed and comfort. I will test drive each but until I do does anyone have any comments on either of these keyboards?  TIA

i own like 5 keyboards
--for some reason, I don't know! I only use one for work. I must be a pack rat. I don't know about the locked keys, my idea was that one key was stuck, but she said the number keys work. I don't know whats up with that unless you have another keyboard hooked up with something pressing down on those keys.
Different types of errors are weighted differently ...
so more serious errors count more, less serious count less. I have 8 reports a month QA'd. My QA person listens to the dictation while reading my transcribed report and marks errors and classifies each error. The total is weighted on a percentage.

Last month on my 8 QA'd reports, I had only 1 error and it was a style format error (I used a "dash" as the physician dictated but the BOS2 says to use 2 dashes if dashes are being used and BOS2 prefers using semi-colons). That was the only error of any kind I had and it was not serious. My monthly QA score (because of how this type of error was weighted) was 99.9%. I have had a few times of 100% but I have never had below 99%. My QA person gives me a full explanation of why it is an error and sometimes marks information that is not counted against me but is given as "information only". Noncritical errors are only counted once in a document and critical errors are counted as often as you have them (ex: if you used perineal instead of peroneal --that is a critical error).