MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia University undergraduates interested in pursuing health careers have a new opportunity to jump into an active, professional role in WVU Healthcare’s Emergency Department (ED). 

Several scribes will be hired and trained to support ED physicians in the exam room by documenting chart information in each patient’s electronic medical record. The use of medical scribes is a growing trend, as the practice allows attending physicians to devote all their attention to the patient as another person focuses entirely on recording everything from medical history and lists of medications to treatment and discharge plans.

“We’re very excited about bringing scribes on board,” Todd Crocco, M.D., chair of the WVU Department of Emergency Medicine, said. “Everyone wins with this program. Having that extra person taking notes improves physicians’ efficiency, improves patient safety and gives students invaluable experience in a real working environment. It’s a very important job.”

Scribe programs are making an impact on patient care in emergency rooms around the country by helping to streamline visits and improve patient satisfaction by allowing more concentrated doctor/patient interaction, even shortening the length of their stay.

Students get the chance to dive right into the medical field, working side by side with physicians in a fast-paced, professional setting.

“This is a chance for the right pre-med, nursing or pharmacy student to get a true taste of working in the real world,” Dr. Crocco continued. “A medical career isn’t for everyone, and there’s probably no better way to find out if you’re heading down the right path.”

The learning and use of medical terminology proves to be an asset in classes, often giving scribes an academic advantage. An overwhelmingly large percentage of scribes continue on to medical school, many choosing to go into emergency medicine.

WVU Healthcare will employ its scribes through a contracted agency, eScribe Management Solutions. Applications will be accepted for the next three weeks, and eScribe representatives will be in Morgantown in early November to interview suitable candidates. Online training for new scribes begins once selected, followed by four to six weeks of on-the-job training beginning Jan. 2, 2012.

Interested undergraduates should be pre-med, nursing, pharmacy or honors students with above average grade point averages, preferably 3.5 or better. Applicants must also be available to work two shifts a week, possibly including night, weekend and holiday hours, depending on the individual student’s academic schedule. Due to the lengthy training required, the position requires a one-year commitment.

For more information and to request an application, visit Interested applicants may also contact Kim Campbell at 757-941-0660 or

For more information: Leigh Limerick, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
lal: 09-30-11