5 Qualifications Your IME Transcription Vendor Must Meet
The Fine Art of Transcribing Independent Medical Examinations/Evaluations and Other Related Reports:
Peer Reviews, Impartial Examinations, Independent Medical Assessments, Vocational Assessments, Functional Capacity Evaluations, Impairment Ratings, Second Opinions, Return To Work Evaluations, Fitness For Duty Exams, File Reviews, etc.
We’ve been doing IME transcribing for 20+ years, and we’ve seen clients come to us after a bad experience when they chose the cheapest provider without carefully evaluating the vendor’s qualifications. The following are the five (5) most important areas to evaluate when making your vendor selection.
Minimum of three (3) years’ experience transcribing for disability insurance, third-party administrator companies, legal and workers’ compensation entities. Fluency in the spelling AND meaning of diagnostic testing, multi-specialty medical and legal terminology. Also, be sure your vendor has extensive experience building and utilizing the types of templates used in IME reports for easy readability and consistency. An IME report which is not properly formatted is very difficult to read and is of little value to the client.
2. Secure Internal and External Controls
Encrypted dictation/transcription portal, secure email, secure fax, secure file sharing ability and any other necessary HIPAA compliance controls. These safeguards help to prevent unauthorized use or disclosure of PHI. Employees and transcriptionists are trained regarding information pertaining to security, privacy, and confidentiality.
3. Completed Security Forms
Your vendor should have completed security forms that can be provided to you if you so require, e.g. SIG (Security Information Gathering report), SSAE 16 certification related to the dictation/transcription portal utilized, Detail Security report by Securityscorecard.com, Vendor Authentication and Encryption reports, CSS Tier 2 Assessment, WISP report, and the Pentest report.
4. U.S. Based and Operated Team
Here in the U.S., we have the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) as well as a host of state privacy rights; whereas transcribers in other countries may not comply with our privacy and patient confidentiality laws. These transcriptionists may not even know what standards of privacy are required.
Many foreign transcriptionists, who can speak English, are not familiar with American expressions and/or the colloquial sayings doctors often use, and can be unfamiliar with American names and places; or specific medical jargon. For example, “subarachnoid hemorrhage” may be transcribed as “subarachnoid hemorrhoids.”
5. On Time, Every Time
Claims and IME referral management have pre-determined timelines. Ensure that your dictation/transcription platform is available 24/7 and that you have the ability to track statuses in real-time. If your vendor is indeed experienced in the field of IME transcription, they should be able to guarantee on-time delivery.
We hope that this list helps you in vetting your current transcription vendor or selecting a new one.