Editing Account Specifications

Over editing is making corrections to a draft which may make it more readable, but will have no effect on the medical accuracy or meaning.  When transcribing, it is very easy for us to improve what we hear structurally and grammatically.  As we listen to the dictation, we can easily change what is spoken as we type it.  Unfortunately, when editing drafts, this is neither easy nor always recommended.           

A recent poll conducted by the AHDI Lounge showed that the majority of Medical Transcription Editors are over editing even though they know it is having a negative impact on their productivity and therefore their pay.  The question below is verbatim from the survey:

Question: If it were totally up to you, which of the following would you prefer?

  • Leave speech recognition drafts “verbatim” with regard to sentence structure, grammar, etc. and only correct spelling
  • Edit speech recognition drafts for greater clarity, even if not required and even if it hurts my production and compensation

The results showed that 61% of participants would prefer to edit for greater clarity regardless of the negative affect to their productivity.   While we discourage this, the results do not come as a surprise.  Medical transcriptionists have always taken pride in their work and strived for top-notch quality.  If this is an area where you struggle to compromise, I encourage you to begin with the account specifications.

Account Specifications are rules that MTs need to remember when typing documents from scratch; rules such as date/time formatting and abbreviations handling. When editing drafts created by M*Modal, many of these rules are set up by a manager or implementation team and are automatically applied to the draft before being sent to you for editing.  If you make changes to these account specifications for your own personal preference, you are over editing. 

M*Modal does attempt to provide as complete a document as possible.  However, if an account specification is incorrect according to the rules you’ve been given, you must always adhere to the rules. Providing a document according to the healthcare provider’s requirements always come first.   If you feel that your account specifications have been incorrectly applied, make the necessary corrections in the draft document and contact your account manager.


  • When allowed edit for content, not cosmetics
  • Over-editing only applies to edits that do NOT change the meaning of the content. If you are ever in doubt, make the edit.
  • Your instructions from the hospital or your manager must always come first – if your instructions require that you make an unnecessary edit, make the edit.

2 thoughts on “Editing Account Specifications

  1. Misty, what a good post and absolutely on target. I wrote about that survey as well and it was surprising to me as the very act of over-editing costs the MTs time and money AND costs their employer revenue. It is indeed the “pride of the MT” that gets us here, I think and you’ve done a great job of talking about it.

  2. Thank you, Kathy! I read your post. It was very informative.
    Kathy’s blog is located at mttoolsonline.com. Lots of interesting posts!

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