Transcend Expands Services with Acquisition

Medical transcription services company Transcend Services will acquire OTP Technologies, a Chicago-based rival, expanding its reach not only into new geographic areas but also into other market segments. OTP has a strong presence in the Chicago area, and is also well positioned in hospitals.

Transcend's CEO, Larry Gerdes, also sees the acquisition as a way to increase the use of speech recognition in transcription. About 20 percent of Transcend's transcription services are handled via speech engines under a license it has for hosted speech solutions from Pittsburgh's MultiModal Technologies.

Transcend offers customers access to a national Internet-based network and platform. Physicians can call in and dictate into a speech hub over the phone. The file is saved as a .wav file and can be accessed nationwide by Transcends transcription staff.

"OTP didn't have access to the types of technology that we have," Gerdes says. "Ultimately, we would like to make [speech recognition] available to their customers and allow them to take advantage of it."

"It is an alternative way to handle your production," Gerdes explains. "We use it as a production tool for our people rather than selling it to our customers. Speech recognition allows us to be more productive and effective, with improved turn-around time."

"In using the Transcend BeyondText platform, which is fully equipped with speech recognition and speech understanding, it essentially means that more volume can be processed than before," adds Michael Finke, CEO of MultiModal Technologies.

The OTP acquisition further gives Transcend access to hospitals, where OTP had a strong presence,

OTP was a small transcription company owned and operated by Jim and Sharon Vonderhaar. The couple also owned DataLogix, which was acquired by Transcend in 1993. At the time, Transcend retired the name DataLogix, but is now considering rebranding the OTP services with the DataLogix name.

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