Medical Transcription: How to Challenge a Quality Assessment Penalty - dummies

Medical Transcription: How to Challenge a Quality Assessment Penalty

By Anne Martinez

A quality assessment score for your medical transcription work isn’t automatically a take-it-or-leave-it proposition. If you feel you’ve been improperly dinged in an evaluation, you can appeal.

First, however, give yourself a cooling-off period. Wait at least 24 hours before challenging a score. Use that time to evaluate whether the discrepancy is significant enough to be worth your time and energy to dispute. If the effect is minor, sometimes just letting it slide is the more prudent (and cost-effective) option.

If you decide to challenge a QA assessment, the best route is usually to approach your immediate supervisor rather than the QA person directly. Your supervisor most likely has the power to retroactively change a score. Plus, if the supervisor agrees with you, they’ll probably pass it on to the QE; if they don’t, the QE may never know you disputed, thus avoiding potentially hard feelings on the QE’s part.

Be very matter of fact about it, and back up your case with supporting evidence. Here are some possibilities:

  • Citing a specific page from AHDI’s Book of Style for Medical Transcription is ideal.

  • Referencing previous QA feedback you received, preferably on a report for the same client account, can be powerful.

  • If it’s a matter of account specifics that deviate from standard guidelines, the QE may be unaware of the deviation. Pointing that out will clear things up immediately.

Punctuation tends to be a hot button. Getting dinged for something like an allegedly misplaced comma is especially frustrating. In such cases, it can be more effective to argue that your punctuation choice didn’t impact the meaning of the sentence rather than argue about whether it was technically correct.

If your employer is calculating a QA score using an error points system, there’s a good chance they’re using one defined by the AHDI. The AHDI completely made over its recommended scoring system in 2010.

Many minor items that resulted in a score deduction under the old system don’t under the new one. If your QA report includes fractional points (for example, 1.5 or 0.25) it’s probably based on the old system. Alerting your employer about the update may work in your favor, if not immediately then on future evaluations.

Whether your appeal succeeds or is turned down, accept the judgment in a professional manner. Remember that the QE is another MT, like you, who is working hard, occasionally has bad days, and is sticking by what she believes is correct. If you’re consistently butting heads with QA, then you’ll have to decide whether it’s something you can live with or if it may be time to seek a different employer (and a different QE).