Speech Recognition transformed the process of Medical Dictation and Transcription?

July 18, 2019

It would be an understatement to say that the technological advancements have had some impact on the health care industry because if we explore how technology has impacted the medical and health care industry, we will notice a pattern of revolutionary growth with every technological advent. It has affected the procees of medical dictation too.

Technological advancements have been responsible for profoundly upgrading the documentation workflow of the health care industry. Every technological innovation builds applications that not only transforms the processes but also streamlines the operations – They are truly responsible for revolutionizing the growth aspect of not just the industry of health care but any industry! Though such technological transformations are revolutionary, they almost always pose a threat of replacement to the industry professionals and while that is a cause of concern, we must remember that with every challenge, comes an opportunity to evolve. One such technological advancement that has had an impact on the process of medical dictation and subsequently medical transcription is speech recognition technology! But before we learn the extent of the impact that speech recognition has had on medical dictation and medical transcription let’s first understand what speech recognition is?

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Speech recognition technology commonly abbreviated as SRT is a type of artificial intelligence in which the software identifies the spoken words and transforms them into digitized text. To facilitate this process, there are handheld devices, apps and software are through which SRT identifies the phrases of the speech and the spoken words into texts. The technology of speech recognition goes back to the early 1900s when the first Dictaphone was invented but today, this technology has come a far way! The advent of speech recognition technology in the modern era was met with an enthusiastic response by various departments especially the law enforcement and legal industry.

Doctor investigating something

Today, speech recognition is not just predominant in law enforcement and legal departments but it is very actively being used in the health care and medical industry. Through its integration within the health care industry has not been entirely successful, there have been some advantages to integrating SRT with medical dictation. Let’s explore these advantages and the way speech recognition technology has impacted medical dictation and the industry of medical transcription:

• SRT enables the doctor to conduct the medical dictation as well as create a structured clinical document. Though these documents are not accurate as the ones’ transcribed by transcriptionist professionals, it does enables the physicians to create a draft document during medical dictation on a real-time basis.

• In extension to the above fact, implementation of SRT in the medical dictation process has allowed now allows the physician to create a preliminary draft of the patient health information that can be made available to other health care professionals in an emergency case scenario.

• A survey conducted in Quebec, Canada, where a total of five reviews were systematically studied determined that the overall quality of the transcribed document is not as accurate as expected. Medical dictation, when conducted with SRT software’s, do yield structured clinical documents but they need to be thoroughly reviewed. However, the study also states that there is an upside of SRT! The upside is that the time taken by the transcriptionist to yield the final report is drastically reduced.

• Medical dictation processes integrated with SRT also has had an impact on the process of medical transcription. Though SRT’s are themselves not able to deliver an accurate report, Speech recognition software’s do enable the transcriptionist to develop transcription reports with better accuracy. This is because there is an initial draft available with the transcriptionist to edit and work upon – In a way, the advent of SRT has enhanced the quality of clinical documentation.

• Physicians that conduct medical dictation with an integrated SRT software yield an initial draft thereby reducing the occurrence of error that might have happened due to either heavy accents of the speaker or local slang language however, such reports must still thoroughly be reviewed to ensure that they have been transcribed according to the data mentioned in the voice recording.

• The advent of SRT in the medical dictation subsequently transformed the role of medical transcriptionist too! Now, a SRT integrated medical dictation is dealt by an editor. SRT has transformed the role of medical transcriptionist from a typist to an editor and now, their tasks are far more challenging! The integration of SRT in medical dictation enables the medical transcriptionist to take on more challenging roles that requires them to use their problem solving and analytical skills. This in turn leads to transcribing documents with high quality.

• Since an initial draft is now available with the transcriptionist, the time taken to complete a transcribed report is now reduced to a great extent. Thus, SRT’s integration in medical dictation has made it possible to reduce the turnaround time.

Today, an initial draft of the transcribed medical report can be made available if the physician conducts medical dictation with an SRT integrated software – This technological invention was met with weariness by the medical transcription industry. And though SRT has transformed the medical dictation process to an extent, it cannot completely replace the medical transcription process – It still has a far way to go to match the accuracy of transcription carried out by medical transcription professionals.


It can also be said that SRT is one of the cutting edge technologies that has replaced the traditional devices with comprehensive devices and software’s to convert speech into digitized texts. The advent of speech recognition technology did create weariness within the medical transcription industry but as we know today, it was embraced and accepted with the focus of enhancing clinical documentation. Medical dictation processes integrated with SRT’s have not been able to yield accurate report by themselves but in conjunction to the current medical transcription process, they have improved the output.

By: Anna williams Category: blog


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