What do I need to get started?
To take any of Meditec’s training courses, all you will need is a PC with a connection to the Internet, web browser software, and a basic printer. We recommend the Windows XP Operating System (either Home or Professional edition) and we recommend that you use the latest version of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer browser (6.0 or higher). If you decide on the Medical or Legal Transcription Course, the price will include a WavPlayer Foot Pedal device with software. The foot pedal device itself is available in either 9-pin Serial or USB port configuration, but we will ship the 9-pin Serial version unless you (call) specify otherwise. The WavePlayer Software that operates the foot pedal, is ONLY compatible with Windows. Apple/MAC users, please see #2 below.
NOTE: The WavPlayer is the device used to listen to and transcribe dictation. Many doctors, hospitals and transcription companies employ customized software for transcription, and these generally require a 9-pin Serial device, so if you specify USB with your order, be aware that you may need to purchase additional (9-pin) hardware at a later time. If you will be participating in Meditec’s JumpStart Internship programs, you MUST have a 9-pin Serial foot pedal. This is a requirement of the Internship Partners, not a requirement for the course itself. For more information, please see our WavPlayer Technical Support Page
Can I use an Apple/Macintosh computer?
Yes (Maybe!). The vast majority of all computer hardware and software on the market today is designed for PC (Personal Computer) compatibility. Apple/Mac constitutes less than 4% of the market, and therefore you will find fewer hardware/software vendors offering products for that platform, AND you will find fewer businesses/clients supporting the Apple/Mac platform.
While you will be able to access Meditec’s online course materials via the Internet using an Apple/Macintosh computer, you may not be able to connect the transcription foot pedal device and controlling software without some additional expense. The software which controls the transcription foot pedal is ONLY compatible with Windows and the manufacturer ONLY supports the software on a PC. NOTE: Microsoft offers a program called “Virtual PC for Mac with Windows XP”, which is a Windows Emulation software that runs on top of the Mac Operating System. Meditec has sold courses to Mac platform users who have had success running the foot pedal/software with the Virtual PC/Windows software on their Mac systems, HOWEVER, the foot pedal manufacturer (SEE ABOVE) does not support the Mac platform so if you choose to go this route, we cannot guarantee the results.
Meditec’s office computers are all PC based, so we do not have technical support staff to assist you with Apple/Mac issues, and Meditec does not support the Apple/Mac platform for the hardware/software we resell. Meditec is not a vendor for the Microsoft Virtual PC software, so for more information about this product, please contact your local Apple/Mac retailer, or refer to the following Microsoft website:
Virtual PC for Mac @ Microsoft.com”. The retail price for Virtual PC 7 with either Windows XP Home or XP Professional is $249.00, as cited from microsoft.com on 09/01/2005, and is subject to change without notice. Contact Microsoft, Apple, or your local software retailer for more information.
Meditec’s systems are all PC based, so we do not have technical support staff to assist you with Apple/Mac issues. Although we have had clients who have used the Apple/Mac computers successfully, we cannot guarantee that it will work for you, or that you will be able to continue using your Mac once you move into the marketplace (it depends upon your future clients).
ALSO NOTE: If you will be participating in Meditec’s JumpStart/Internship programs for Medical Transcription, please be aware that some of our clients WILL require a 9-pin Serial foot pedal and a Windows-based PC. If you have the Apple/MAC platform, or choose to purchase ONLY the USB foot pedal, you will not be able to meet the requirements for all of the internship clients and/or you may be required to purchase additional equipment.
Caveat for #’s 1 & 2 Above: The basic hardware and software needed to complete your course of study are minimal, but once you move into the business arena you’ve chosen, and depending upon who you go to work for, there will likely be a need for you to make additional investments in both hardware and software. In much the same way that a given company may have a dress code that requires you to wear a 3-piece suite, you may encounter similar requirements for your office tools. For example: If you go to work for a company that uses proprietary transcription hardware/software, you may be required to purchase, lease or rent such hardware/software in order meet your client’s requirements. Meditec provides you with the educational tools and training needed to move into the business arena you’ve chosen, but we have no way of determining what additional hardware or software you may need in the future.
Since employers do not require it, we are not accredited at this time. Our programs teach the skills needed to pursue your chosen career path. Also, we have nationally recognized certifications available for certain programs.
Will I need to buy any other hardware or software in the future?
Yes. Regardless of which course you take, it is assumed that at some point in the future, your computer or other hardware/software components will wear out, become obsolete, or will otherwise need to be upgraded or enhanced in order for you to continue to meet the needs and requirements of your employer or client. For example: If you are embarking on a career in medical or legal transcription (taking one of our transcription courses), you will likely need to have either MS-WORD or WordPerfect as your main editing/word processing system. Which one you need, will depend upon the needs of your employer or client. You may also want to consider using word expander software to increase your production speed. That information is contained in the Transitioning: Student to MT Book available at our website. If you plan on billing services, you will need billing software. Coders use software as well. Everything you need to know about those elements is in the HomeBizBook available at this website.
How long does it take to complete the course?
That depends on you and how much time you have to study. All of Meditec’s courses are “self-paced” which means you may move along as fast as you are able. Platform learning (used in all the training) hastens that process considerably. In general, it will take from 3 to 12 months to complete a course. The average for a comprehensive course, such as medical transcription, is about six months.
Meditec allows up to 1 year for completion of our full on-line courses. An on-line user with extenuating circumstances may request an extension if needed. To receive an extension, it should be requested within 30 days of reaching the 1 year course limit, and a fee will be charged for that extension. Online extensions will provide the student with an additional 4 months to complete their course.
Do I have to buy books or can I just use the on-line materials?
All of Meditec’s full on-line courses include applicable reference materials and the required textbooks needed to complete the training. Students who purchase our full on-line courses may receive a combination of CD-ROM based and printed course materials, in addition to having access to the course-ware via their on-line access account.
Beyond the course, in medical transcription for example, employers often recommend other medical specialty-related books and many transcriptionists will eventually purchase specialty dictionaries, word-expanders, etc., and many medical coders will purchase specialty coding books or coding software programs, but our premise is that there is no need to buy anything else until the course is completed, unless you choose to do so.
Why do I have to pay a registration fee?
The registration fee is required when you enroll in any on-line course. It is a school-related fee to set up the initiation and tracking process. It is not refundable once enrollment has taken place.
NOTE: For Payment Plan customers, the registration fee is charged from the initial installment. For more information, please review the Enrollment Agreement or contact a Meditec enrollment coordinator.