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Does Medical Shorthand Have Anything In Common With Journalist Shorthand?

Medical Shorthand

“Dx – Chest infection, Abx, QDS, TCI if worsening.”
Short for:
Diagnosis – chest infection, antibiotics four times a day, to come in if worsening.

“Fell from bike, ankle: limited ROM, swelling, suspected #, ED.”
Short for:
Fell from bike, ankle: limited range of movement, swelling, suspected fracture, go to emergency department.

These are typical examples from a doctor consultation with a patient – all in an effort to speed up the note taking process. There are lots of potential symbols and abbreviations that can be used, some derived from Latin. You could say it is a form of shorthand writing.

It made more wonder. Is there any relation to journalist shorthand?

Journalist shorthand, also known as Teeline shorthand is a system accepted by the National Council for the Training of Journalists in the UK. It allows for the efficient transcription of spoken word. It involves omitting redundant letters from words making it easy to write an entire conversation with just a few letters. Vowels are usually omitted if they are not the first or last letter of a word. Silent letters are ignored. Common suffixes, letter groupings and prefixes are usually reduced to single symbols. The blog graphic [Photo Credit: Wikimedia] shows an example of some words.

Despite our digital society and the ease of recording, the skill of journalist shorthand is still useful to cover certain events where recording equipment may not be allowed or for events when time is limited. Equally as healthcare professionals, we do not record the audio or video from our consultations.

In summary, medical shorthand uses abbreviations and symbols while the journalist shorthand system is based on changing the alphabetic meaning of letters.

What do the two systems have in common?

They both try to save time!!!

Take a look at my FREE eBook if you are a medic and want to start your writing journey.

1 Comment

  1. Paz says:

    Interesting Post. Keep them coming!

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