A Guide to Medical Transcription Books and Resources

Medical transcriptions are medical language specialists. The bulk of the transcription work in this country is performed by home based professionals. As statutory or contract employees or subcontractors, it is generally up to the home based professional to develop and maintain their own library of professional industry resources. While there are a lot of options available, there are certain medical transcription books that should be considered mandatory for any home based MT professional.

A Basic home library should include at a minimum:

1. A Standard English language Dictionary – Try Webster’s.
2. A Comprehensive Medical Dictionary – Try Dorland’s Illustrated Medical Dictionary or Stedman’s Medical Dictionary
3. A Good Drug Reference Book – Try Stedman’s Quick Look Drug Book and/or American Drug Index by Facts and Comparisons
4. A Good Medical Abbreviations Book – Try Medical Abbreviations: 30000 Conveniences at the Expense of Communication and Safety by Neil M. Davis
5. A Good General Medical Word Book: Try Sloane’s Medical Word Book
6. A Solid Grammar and Style Guide – Try the Book of Style (AHDI), or the Chicago Book of Style.

In addition to general purpose resources most MT’s will rely time to time on specialty resources. Every medical specialty has its own peculiar terminology and vocabulary. Radiologists will use an entirely different set of terms to describe their findings compared to a internal medicine specialists, for example. Stedmans offers an entire library of medical word books. These books average $40 a piece and are continually being revised and updated. You would be advised to hold off on purchasing specific specialty word books until you have a need for them. If you are beginning a new transcription specialty account or expect to be assigned to a specialty work group then a good medical word book is not only invaluable, but should be considered essential. It will add immeasurably to your productivity as a transcriptionist.

Titles from the Stedmans library of Medical Word Books include:

- Cardiovascular & Pulmonary Words
- Dermatology & Immunology Words
- Emergency Medicine Words
- Medical & Surgical Equipment Words
- Neurology & Neurosurgery Words, 4th Edition
- OB-GYN & Pediatric Words, 5th Edition
- Endocrinology Words
- GI & GU Words
- Oncology Words
- Ophthalmology Words
- Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Words
- Orthopedic and Rehab Words
- Plastic Surgery, ENT, & Dentistry Words, 5th Edition
- Internal Medicine Words
- Radiology Words
- Surgery Words
- Organisms and Infectious Diseases Words
- Alternative and Complementary Medicine Words
- Psychiatric Words

As a medical transcription practitioner, you will be continually adding books and resources to your personal library over the years. Be aware that many books are available on CD and increasingly are available online. The ability to search electronically can add significantly to your transcription production.

E-Books on the Rise Again?

Just a few years ago, people were touting e-books as the future of the publishing industry. Through these portable electronic devices, individuals could read entire books without amassing a large collection of tattered paperbacks. Despite all the hoopla, e-books never really took off. Now, one company is hoping to take the technology to the next level.

Just this past month, Discovery Communications (the company behind the Discovery Channel and TLC) was awarded a US patent for a new e-book invention. Though Discovery has been mum on the details, the patent application describes the device as “a new way to distribute books and other textual information to bookstores, libraries and consumers”. The patent is not just for the book-shaped electronic reader itself, but also for an entire electronic library system. Discovery notes in the patent information: ”Not since the introduction of Gutenberg’s movable typeset printing has the world stood on the brink of such a revolution in the distribution of text material. The definition of the word ‘book’ will change drastically in the near future.”

The news of Discovery’s patent certainly perked the ears of Amazon, the maker of the Kindle, a portable electronic device that enables users to get book, magazine and newspaper content instantly. The device was released this past fall after three years in development, and it features a display that resembles real paper. It also offers a large selection of books, giving users access to about 80 percent of current New York Times bestsellers (which cost $9.99 each to download). A keyboard allows users to make notes, highlight text and bookmark pages. Of course, the downside of the Kindle is its price tag of $399 – not exactly attractive to readers used to buying books for around $10 or borrowing them from the library.

The other major obstacle faced by e-books is the question of whether people really want to let go of books. So far, the question remains unanswered. While e-books haven’t thus far lit the industry on fire, they have seen their sales figures increase exponentially in the past few years. But books still have several benefits e-books haven’t been able to match. For one thing, they’re durable. A paperback can get buried in the sand and simply be brushed off, while a $400 electronic device filled with sand could be catastrophic. Secondly, books remain a reflection of personality. Personal libraries remind people of books they’ve read and may want to return to – just like record or movie collections.

Still, e-books do offer intriguing possibilities all their own. For one thing, they give people the ability to get new books in minutes while lying in bed or riding the bus. Secondly, they save space and paper. For the frequent traveler the e-book is much more convenient than lugging around a dozen paperbacks or stopping at each airport book store to add another couple pounds to a carry-on. With e-books, content is instant, bulk is minimal and travel is easy. Ultimately, the widespread acceptance of e-books comes down to whether the benefits of the new technology will outweigh the old. Certainly, e-books must become more affordable and the content available must become limitless. But perhaps Discovery will be the company to make that happen.

Oklahoma City Metropolitan Library System

The Oklahoma City Metropolitan Library System is one of the branches of the Metropolitan Library System which consists of 12 full-service libraries spread out all over Oklahoma County, as well as five smaller extension libraries. The Metropolitan-Library-System contains more than one million books and materials such as newspapers, magazines, videos and books on tape, all of which cover subjects for adults, kids and teens.

The customers of this library-system are citizens of Oklahoma County, individuals who live in the county or attend school in Oklahoma County, or own property here in Downtown OKC, OK. The Metropolitan Library System also features a reciprocal borrowing arrangement with the Pioneer Library-System. The latter system has libraries in counties including Cleveland, McClain and Pottawatomie.

As part of this arrangement, the services of the Metropolitan-Library-System are also extended to the citizens of these counties serviced by the Pioneer Library-ystem and individuals who attend school in Blanchard, and who possess a valid borrower’s card of Pioneer Library. Individuals not meeting any of these requirements are offered an Annual Fee card to purchase. The Metropolitan-Library-System also maintains Outreach Collection in nursing homes and retirement centers. It also funds a “Books by Mail” service for shut-ins.

The Oklahoma City Metropolitan Library System offers knowledge and valuable information to those who seek them in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Visitors to Oklahoma City meeting the above requirements can increase their knowledge base though the Oklahoma Metropolitan-Library-System’s services. Hotels in Downtown OKC offer visitors great comfort, convienience and hospitality, blended with affordability.