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Dictation Source review

A full service medical transcription provider

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(Image: © Dictation Source)

Our Verdict

Dictation Source has enough options on their platform to fit different workflows, for users that can get past the limit of no mobile apps, limited support options, and a steep learning curve.

For

  • Free trial
  • 24/7 support with live personnel
  • Flexible delivery options
  • Available templates and macros

Against

  • No mobile apps available
  • No Windows or Mac software
  • Shorter trial than competitors
  • Steep learning curve

Dictation Source  is a veteran of the medical transcription area, since 1991. It is US based, with its headquarters in Bethel Park, PA, with other offices throughout the country in New Jersey, Maryland, Oregon, and Florida. 

Using their “Proprietary developed automated platform,” this company provides medical transcription to over 1,400 healthcare settings in the US, with goals of high quality and accuracy. Clients include Bartlett Regional Hospital, Ohio University, Vibra Healthcare, and Walter Reed National Medical Military Center.

Features

(Image credit: Dictation Source)

Features

The process of transcription, like many other jobs in society is evolving, as automation and digital technology get applied, with the goal of increasing efficiency and lowering costs. Despite being a veteran of the medical transcription space, Dictation Source applies a hybrid of automated transcription, and human editing to transcribe medical dictation with accuracy and efficiency at a competitive price point.

Dictation Source offers “Multiple ways to dictate office notes,” which does not specifically state what they are, and if there are options for mobile platform apps- an increasingly popular option, especially with younger clinicians. Technology is used to enhance the efficiency of the workflow, which starts with available macros to cut down on redundant text. Additionally, templates are used in an unlimited fashion to further reduce the amount that the clinician needs to dictate.

Security

(Image credit: Dictation Source)

The actual transcription process that Dictation Source uses is multifactorial. This includes the first pass to be done via an automated process to convert the voice file to text for efficiency and speed. Next, there is a medical transcriptionist that goes over the dictation to ensure accuracy. Turnaround time is targeted for the next business day, and work is not outsourced to other providers, keeping the files inhouse for a higher level of security.

The notes that are created can be delivered via a variety of methods. The options include automated emails, downloads from a secure site, print outs, and delivery directly to the EMR.

Speech Recognition

(Image credit: Dictation Source)

For an even more affordable option, there is also the Speech Recognition package. This is designed to take an uploaded file, and convert it to text in under 60 seconds. The difference is that there is no transcriptionist to go over it after, but the claimed accuracy is 95%, which may be high enough for some users. The accuracy also can be improved with training, and with a better audio environment, which the company states can approach 99%.

In contrast, Dictation Source also offers the Virtual Scribe service, which aspires to offer the full services of a dedicated scribe, without the personnel issues of turnover and training. While this package has a higher cost, it is lower than the cost of a dedicated scribe in the office. This Virtual Scribe can significantly increase the productivity of the clinician, with real time transcription into the EMR right during the patient’s visit. There is also no training period like a traditional scribe as these Virtual Scribes are already familiar with many EMR’s. Dictation Source also integrates ‘Coding automation technology,’ that can perform coding entry and Physician Quality Recording System (PQRS) services for the clinical encounter. Finally, any queries between the scribe and physician are handled via a secure private messenger app.

Drawbacks

Dictation Source misses the boat in some areas, such as not providing the full pricing information. Additionally, it is fully web based, which means there are no apps to install for either iOS nor Android, and no option for dedicated software for Windows or Mac, which some offices with less than speedy or reliable broadband connections may prefer.

The other criticism we found from online reviews is that there is a steep learning curve to this platform.

Support

Support gets provided via either a toll free, dedicated support line, or via an email address. It is stated that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year, with live support personnel, so it is hard to get better than that level of availability.

Pricing

Dictation Source’s pricing has no setup, nor cancellation fees. It is based on the 65 character line, with the option to format notes into pre-existing templates, or onto the practice’s letterhead without additional charge.

Unlike many other services, there is at least a hint of their pricing, which is given as a range of 7.5 cents (£0.058) to 10 cents (£0.078) per line. For final pricing, with selected options, contact for a custom quote is required, but we appreciate that Dictation Source gives some idea of the range of pricing upfront. The higher range price gets charged for faster turnaround when stat dictations are needed, and also for entering the note directly into the client’s EMR.

There is an offer for a 7-day free trial for all of their medical transcription services, without obligation. However, the time of a week is shorter than their competitors with others having 14 to 30 days for the time of their free trials.

Final verdict

While there are many medical transcription services, US based Dictation Source has plenty of standout features, including 24/7 support via email and phone, a variety of delivery options, and an automated process for transcription to combine the speed of automation with the accuracy of professional transcriptionists. However, potential users will need to factor in the lack of mobile apps, and also dedicated software to determine if this solution suits their medical transcription needs.