If your organization is seeking to lower clinical documentation costs, lessen data entry burdens on caregivers, or mitigate physician burnout, front-end speech recognition is a solution worth considering. According to a survey of 300 physicians by Reaction Data, 62% of the doctors surveyed reported using speech recognition in the EHR. Speech recognition technology has advanced a lot in recent years. It’s become more affordable, accurate, and easier to use. Even speakers with accents use it to dictate their clinical notes with ease. With front-end speech recognition, caregivers can document their patient encounters more quickly and comprehensively.
If you’re thinking of deploying speech recognition to help save time in your workday, consider the following as part of your decision-making process.
Speech recognition is customarily available on a licensed basis. So, if you have ten providers, you’ll need ten licenses. Having a license for each doctor allows for customizations unique to each physician. The license will also enable you to customize a speech profile for each user so that it learns the nuances of how each person dictates and improve text output over time. While license costs are an outlay, they eliminate the uncertainty around expenses for human transcription services.
You can purchase speech recognition software to install locally on your computer or access it via the cloud. If you purchase speech recognition for local installation, be mindful of how many installations your license allows. For instance, if you use more than one computer in your office, on how many PCs will you be able to use it? Do you want to be able to access it from a computer in your home as well? Be sure to understand any licensing limitations.
Knowing how you can record your dictations with front-end speech recognition is essential. Does the system permit you to use the microphone on your computer? If it does, is your computer’s microphone sufficient for speech recognition? How about options to dictate using a USB microphone connected to your PC, like a SpeechMike? What about a mobile app, and are there additional fees for dictating via a mobile app?
Editing and Document Management
Does the speech recognition tool give you an option to send your files to a human editor for further review? If grammar, punctuation, or formatting aren’t your forte or something you want to spend time addressing, being able to send files to another person for a final review can be a notable time saver. The best speech recognition tools will provide you with a document management portal to help you stay organized.
If you want to use the front-end speech recognition tools to populate data in your EHR, email client, or Microsoft Word, is that possible? For an EHR, will the speech recognition tool work with the electronic health record out of the box, or is there an additional fee or specialized IT support required to make this happen? Some EHR vendors will encourage you to buy their speech recognition solution. Find out if you switch EHRs if you will be able to keep the same speech recognition licenses you’ve purchased.
Does the tool offer browser-based dictation capabilities? If so, which web browsers are compatible with the speech-recognition utility? Can you use Safari, Firefox, Chrome, or Edge? Consider if the front-end speech recognition tool has limitations between Windows and Mac. Likewise, if you intend to use the solution for EMR transcription, is the tool EHR agnostic or will it only work with certain electronic health records?
A carefully chosen speech recognition tool that leverages machine learning and artificial intelligence can help you complete your clinical documentation in less time and with less strain. From a financial perspective, for the cost of a license, providers can dictate as much or as little as they need to, which can eliminate unpredictable costs associated with traditional dictation and medical transcription alternatives.
Remember, front-end speech recognition tools empower caregivers to keep their focus on their patients and less so on their EHR. This not only helps reduce physician burnout but also improves patient satisfaction since caregivers can be more attentive to their patients instead of the EHR during each encounter. And since doctors can speak three times faster than they can type, provider schedules become freed up so they can treat more patients, which leads to increased revenue. This means no more taking charting work home on the evenings and weekends. Isn’t it time you spent more time with your friends and family or just enjoying free time by yourself?
Be mindful that speech recognition won’t cure every patient-documentation woe. It will sometimes misrecognize what you dictate, which means some terms need manual correction to ensure accuracy. Likewise, HIPAA mandates that only authorized personnel can have access to PHI, which includes spoken information that others could hear while you dictate. As with any technology, you will need to consider the learning curve and operational logistics.
If you need guidance choosing an instant speech-to-text transcription solution for your facility, contact an automated speech-to-text transcription provider like Athreon. Athreon’s front-end speech recognition solution, VoiceNote, provides several key advantages for converting speech to text. Doctors routinely say that VoiceNote is the best audio-to-text transcription software they have used because it’s:
For more details about VoiceNote, contact Athreon for a demo. Be sure to ask about the free transcription audio-to-text trial, where you can test drive VoiceNote for yourself with no cost or obligation.