Medical Scribes Rise in Demand as Physicians Transition to EHRs

April 21, 2014 in News

As more doctors transition from paper to electronic health records, they are increasingly hiring medical scribes to help input medical notes into patients’ EHRs, NPR’s “Shots” reports.

Alex Geesbreght — CEO of PhysAssist, the first scribe staffing firm in the U.S. — said the company is growing by 46% to 50% annually and now employs about 1,400 scribes, up from 35 in 2008. Other scribing firms also are expanding quickly, including:

  • Medical Scribe Systems; and
  • Scribe America.

About Scribes

According to “Shots,” medical scribes typically are medical students and earn $8 to $16 an hour. Their daily responsibilities include being able to:

  • Correctly input medical terminology and billing code data;
  • Easily adapt to various EHR platforms; and
  • Quickly record physician notes during patient examinations.

Physicians still are responsible for what is in patients’ medical records and therefore must review the information.

Devesh Ramnath, a Dallas-based orthopedic surgeon, said the use of a medical scribe saves hours of administrative work and allows him to better focus on his patients (Silverman, “Shots,” NPR, 4/21).

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