Doctors’ Training vs. Transcriptionists’ Training

This will be a bit simplified, but I think you’ll get the idea. If you consider a doctor’s training. Doctors are trained in an incredible volume of information and then how to use that information along with a lot of other variables to be able to evaluate patients conditions, provide care and at the end of the day solve problems.

On the other hand, transcriptionists are trained to do repetitive tasks very well with high accuracy. Certainly they have to have some skills with the medical terminology. Also, many have moved beyond transcription into helping with the clinical documentation and ensuring that it’s documented properly.

None of this should be news to anyone. Now for the big finish…

Which training is more suited for someone doing a million clicks on an EMR?

Is it any wonder that scribes and other creative models for documenting a patient visit in an EMR are becoming an important part of the discussion? Watch for many more creative models using people to come out in the next year.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of the, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference,, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.


  • The only problem I have with scribes is that it would feel strange to me having a third eye in the room which is supposed to be my personal relationship with each patient. Using them for documentation purposes also seems questionable. How does one ensure that the scribe writes exactly the language the provider wants without doing extra work? I like documenting myself because I know it gets done the way I want it done the first time…. period, sign, logout, done.

  • I don’t know many people that have an issue with an extra person in there. In many specialties they need an MA or nurse in their with them anyway and that hasn’t harmed the patient care.

    Certainly there’s some trust involved in the scribe recording it accurately. Although, the same could be said with transcription, no? The provider will have to sign off the scribes work and so they should review the most important points at that time. One solution I just heard about has an even more creative solution to this. I just can’t talk about it yet;-)

    I think many will agree with you, and that’s great. If I was a doctor, I’d probably do like you. If I’m going to be responsible, then I want to do it. Although, many will love the scribe or related approaches.

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