MT Proofreading

Editing / QA / Back to Free Stuff

2/96, from Sharon Thomas,
I work in QA for a Radiology Department and we have been keeping track of our error rate for several months now. However, we have a box where we keep all reports that were changed FOR WHATEVER REASON. The box is sealed with a slot for the reports to be slipped through. At the end of the month, I go through the reports. I have several different categories that I use divide the reports, but the major ones are edited by "radiologist" (not transcription error) and "transcriptionist" error. It can be very difficult sometimes to determine if something was a transcription error, but my basic method is this: Could or should the transcriptionist have been able to tell from the context of the report and her own experience that something was wrong? After I get the reports divided up and compiled, I make an anonymous report on all transcriptionists to all the MTs. It includes the number of error, percentage of errors and the exact phrase involved. That way, they know and I know where they stand as compared to their co-workers, and we can both see if there is a problem. I also provide them with copies of the reports for their review. This process takes about 8 or 9 hours total for the equivalent of 7 to 8 employees. It is time consuming but extremely practical. It has been received well by the transcriptionists, as I have not put it in place as a tool for potential punishment, but rather a learning tool for everyone concerned. It has caused a little competition, but so far it seems healthy - after all, number #1 and #2 are only separated by a fraction of a percentage with the error percentage running between 0% some months to 0.78% other months.

If you have any questions, drop me a line. I also invite others to comment on this, as this issue is of interest to me also. How do outsourced transcription agencies keep tract of accuracy numbers? What are the methods in other hospital-based offices? If you have a single account, do you keep track of this so you can report it to your account?

Using a transcriber to proofread:
From Mary Morken
A friend told me she can speed up her Sanyo TRC-8080 that she got from Martel's for about $200 so fast that she can actually listen to the whole document again while proofreading, and it helps her scan fast. I heard it over the phone, sounded like Donald Duck. I didn't know there was a transcriber that did this. Sounds great, especially for students. She said she has had no trouble with it. She's the only MT I've talked to who relistens as she proofreads.

From Toni Mercadante
I always (and always have) proofread while relistening to dictation. That's why I'd never make it with a service or hospital--it takes me much longer to proofread than to transcribe. I set my transcriber to the highest speed I can and let 'er rip. Yes, it's time consuming, but it gives me confidence that I've done the best I can with the material. With pathology, I often have to retype the gross (from hard copy) done by the in-house transcriptionist before I can transcribe the microscopic to finish the report. In this case, I usually call my own phone-in line and dictate what's on the hard copy. It's easier to retype and proofread this way than to do it while looking back and forth from one hard copy to another.

From Bill Bentsen
I have a Sanyo TRC9040, a Sony BM805 and an Olympus Pearlcorder. Each has the speed control which allows me to run it fast while proofreading. I use this feature to try to decipher words I can't understand while on regular speed also. (I use slow speed for the same thing.)

Things to check when proofreading a document:

1. Fill in the blanks or make notes.
2. Consistent pronouns: he or she?
3. Consistent tense: was or is?
4. Consistent left and right.
5. Singular and plural: sclera or sclerae?
6. Headings: Are things labeled properly?
7. Sound alikes that spellcheckers don't catch.
8. Unnecessary awkward repetitions.
9. No abbreviations in diagnoses or procedures.
10. Drugs capitalized or not, if spellchecker does not check this.
11. Formatting, headings, indentions and widow lines.
12. Proper use of hyphens.
13. Dates.
14. Complete sentences.
15. Punctuation.

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