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The Top 3 Challenges of Medical Transcription and How to Overcome Them

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Accurate transcription is crucial for maintaining patient records, compliance, and efficient revenue cycle management. However, transcription comes with its own set of challenges including data-entry fatigue, turnaround time pressures, and difficulties with mitigating inaccuracies. 

Documenting cases promptly not only enhances operational efficiency but also ensures that coding and billing can proceed without delays.  

By improving the most common transcription challenges, your ASC can improve the accuracy of operative notes and overall revenue cycle efficiency.  

Here’s how to overcome the top 3 challenges of medical transcription. 

1. Kickstart the Revenue Cycle with Timely Dictation

The claims process for the surgical revenue cycle begins when a case is dictated, and delays in dictation can have far-reaching consequences. The longer it takes to document a case, the longer it takes to code and bill it, which also increases the chances of cases getting lost in the shuffle.  

To avoid delays in collections and missed reimbursement opportunities, we recommend a streamlined transcription workflow that integrates with your ASC’s revenue cycle. 

For example, an all-in-one transcription mobile app gives physicians the ability to dictate, review, and e-sign reports from any location. Features can include automated push notifications to remind doctors of pending dictations and notifications can be tailored to specific time parameters set by the ASC. Within the app, physicians can select the appropriate patient and dictate that case. This ensures dictations are linked accurately to the corresponding cases. 

Another mobile app feature that streamlines the transcription process is real-time visibility into the dictation timeline. With email notifications and alerts, ASC administrators can track progress efficiently to stay informed about what’s pending and what’s been completed. 

After a case has been dictated and transcribed, it’s ready for the physician’s review and signature. Signing reports electronically simplifies this final step and facilitates faster delivery to your coding team. Mobile app push notifications alert physicians so that they know when reports are transcribed, making the signing process efficient and prompt. These proactive features streamline dictation and transcription to kick off your revenue cycle on the right track. 

2. HIPAA Compliance and Patient Privacy 

Utilizing transcription technology drives faster turnaround times; however, you’ll want to ensure your transcription tools and processes adhere to HIPAA guidelines and keep patient data secure. 

A seamless integration between dictation, transcription, and EHR/EMR systems can improve data entry accuracy and accessibility among providers without jeopardizing HIPAA protocols.  

While investing in an EHR system is not always practical for ASCs, cloud-based solutions such as chart management software can also offer easy access and secure storage of operative notes.

3. Balancing Dual Demands for Accuracy and Speed 

When choosing a transcription service, consider industry benchmarks and ease of use. If your provider guarantees operative notes the next day with 99% accuracy, be sure the service also integrates with your revenue cycle workflow so you can minimize unnecessary steps and achieve faster reimbursement.  

A centralized, total RCM workflow that includes transcription and other revenue cycle processes can improve turnaround times, reduce administrative burden, and increases your rate of collections. For example, if medical coders have instantaneous access to a transcribed operative note, claims can be coded within hours (and submitted shortly thereafter).   

However, speed is only one part of the equation. Accuracy and clean record keeping are paramount from a clinical, regulatory, and reimbursement perspective.  No matter how fast you receive operative notes, if the transcriptions conflict with patient records or the claim submission, these errors will hinder the revenue cycle process.

 Final Thoughts on Navigating ASC Transcription Challenges

You need to feel confident about the turnaround time and the accuracy of your operative notes.  ASCs that strike the right balance between accuracy and speed in transcription can enhance patient care, maintain compliance, and optimize their revenue cycle.  
By integrating transcription with coding and billing processes, ASCs can improve the accuracy and speed of their entire revenue cycle.  

Ready to get paid more and get paid faster? Request a demo to learn more about how our Total RCM workflow streamlines dictation, transcription, and RCM processes.

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