Does QA matter? Ask the 17,000 pregnant men

In case you missed it, last month’s newsfeed turned up a series of interesting articles about a medical miracle: 17,000 pregnant men in Britain.

NEMT Communications Director Tara Courtland

Even if you did miss the story, if you work in the healthcare field, your mind has probably immediately turned to the answer: coding errors.

And that’s exactly what happened: coding errors led to reports of 17,000 pregnant men because the guys were accidentally coded for, say, an obstetrics exam instead of a prostate exam.

Of course it’s led to a lot of talk about ICD-10 and the wisdom of adding another 122,000 codes to the books. But there are plenty of people already arguing about that so I’ll pass.

Instead, I just want to take the opportunity to pat medical transcriptionists, editors and coders on the back. What you do is important. Accuracy really matters and typos can be costly (or worse).

Good, skilled, highly-trained personnel are those who have the education, the dedication and the focus to get it right, every time, every day. We can’t replace them with software and we can’t skimp on their training.

We’re proud of our accuracy rate and our people, not just inside NEMT, but in the American industry as a whole. It’s a tough industry – when you get it right, no one notices; when you get it wrong, suddenly 17,000 guys turn up pregnant.

Here’s to those of you who get it right every day. Thank you for all you do.

(You can read the Washington Post article here.)

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About Tara Courtland

Tara Courtland is the communications director at NEMT.
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