Are you a good listener? Do you understand medical terminology? If you do both well, you might consider a job as a medical stenographer. The field is projected to grow faster than the average profession due to the increasing demand for detailed records.

The work can be arduous, requiring a long attention span as you listen to tapes from doctors providing their diagnosis of a patient. Documents produced include discharge summaries, histories, physical-exam and operating-room reports, consultations, autopsies, diagnostic imaging studies and referral letters.

All documents are reviewed by a specialist before becoming a part of the patient’s permanent record. By spotting errors or inconsistencies, experienced stenographers can play a key role in helping patients receive proper care.

Technology is transforming the profession. Stenographers can often download files from the Internet, enabling many to work from home. And voice recognition software is making inroads in more simple applications. This, predicts the BLS, will not substantially reduce demand for stenographers since all records still require editing, clarification and verification.

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