Jeff Rowe, Editor, Future Care

Jeff Rowe is the editor of Future Care and a veteran healthcare journalist and blogger who has reported extensively on initiatives to improve the healthcare system at the local, regional and national level.

Medical scribes association unveils new certifications

May 8, 2017 AT 9:58 PM

One of the developments that has accompanied the spread of EHRs has been the increase in the number of so-called medical scribes, paraprofessionals to whom doctors outsource the documentation of medical record requirements.  But to date there has been little certification or regulation to guide and incentivize the new class of professionals.

Until now.

The American Healthcare Documentation Professionals Group recently announced two new levels of certification:the Apprentice Medical Scribe Professional (AMSP) and the Certified Medical Scribe Professional (CMSP).

Both require applicants to pass a 100-question online exam, and applicants earn the CMSP credential by documenting 200 hours of experience on the job.

““Health care employers value credentials,” said Peter Reilly, the president and CEO of the AHDPG, in an announcement about the group’s certification exam. “Becoming a CMSP places you, your coworkers and your entire organization in another league, positioning you as a leader and role model for your organization.”

The medical scribe profession is rapidly developing in response to the added burden placed on health care practitioners’ to accurately document patient visits in electronic health records systems. Medical scribes are present everywhere throughout hospitals to large clinics and even small private practices.

Physicians frustrated with the ever-increasing burden of administrative tasks can offload data entry onto a scribe. Scribes may also offer relief to healthcare systems seeking greater efficiency and value out of their physicians, as a scribe’s average annual salary of $20,000 could free up clinicians whose time costs organizations significantly more.