Fletcher Allen, a Vermont university hospital and medical center, serves all of
Vermont and the northern New York region. Located in Burlington, Fletcher Allen is a regional, academic healthcare center and teaching hospital in alliance with the University of Vermont.
Fletcher Allen Eliminates 30 Medical Transcription Jobs
New Technology Decreases Need for Transcriptionists
BURLINGTON, VT -- Today, Fletcher Allen Health Care announced that 23 full- and part-time employees will lose their medical transcription positions, effective June 25, as a result of increased efficiencies gained by new technology. Additionally, three positions were vacated through attrition and four per diem positions were eliminated, bringing the total to 30 positions. Fletcher Allen is providing severance packages to affected employees and has reached out to three transcription companies to try to secure employment for qualified candidates.
Medical transcriptionists type and edit the notes dictated by health care providers for a patient’s medical record. A combination of two new technologies is responsible for the decreased need for transcription services. New speech-recognition software, which transcribes lines of dictation that only require editing, was introduced in the fall of 2009; with this new software, the transcription service can produce more lines of dictation in less time with fewer people. In addition, Fletcher Allen implemented an electronic health record system in June, 2009, which allows physicians to enter information directly into the system without dictation; this technology decreased the overall volume of transcription work by 27% to date.
New technology is one example of the changing health care landscape. Health care reform is encouraging the adoption of electronic medical records in health care systems to enhance patient safety, improve outcomes and reduce health care costs.
Impacted Employees to Receive Human Resources Support
Fletcher Allen is providing severance packages to impacted employees tied to their length of service. The package includes assistance in locating other employment. To that end, Fletcher Allen is working with three transcription companies that have expressed interest in making jobs available to qualified candidates; these companies will be testing those interested within the next two weeks.
Fifty-three people will continue to provide editing services and a small amount of traditional transcription services for the organization, which currently produces approximately 19 million lines of transcription per year.
About Fletcher Allen
Fletcher Allen Health Care, together with our partners at the University of Vermont College of Medicine and the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, is Vermont’s academic medical center. Fletcher Allen serves as a regional referral center -- providing advanced care to approximately one million people in Vermont and northern New York -- and as a community hospital for approximately 150,000 residents in Chittenden and Grand Isle counties. With more than 30 patient care sites and 100 outreach clinics, programs and services throughout the region, Fletcher Allen is committed to being a national model for the delivery of high-quality academic health care for a rural region. For more information about Fletcher Allen, visit our Web site at www.FletcherAllen.org.