New knowledge and information is constantly being added to the field of medicine by way of an ever increasing number of research studies, growing clinical experience, and new ideas and thoughts. All this information needs to be effectively communicated to different audiences, e.g. the physicians and other healthcare professionals, patients and consumers and the drug regulators. Medical writing is the discipline of writing scientific documents by writers in the field of medicine – the “medical writers”. Medical writers may not be the original scientists who did the actual research, but work with the physicians/scientists involved in the generation of data, and help present the information in an appropriate manner. The importance of good medical writing cannot be ignored as science depends on clear and accurate reporting – an otherwise meticulous research can appear flawed if it is poorly presented.
Medical writing involves writing scientific documents of different types which include regulatory and research-related documents, disease or drug-related educational and promotional literature, publication articles like journal manuscripts and abstracts, content for healthcare websites, health-related magazines or news articles. The scientific information in these documents needs to be presented to suit the level of understanding of the target audience, namely, patients or general public, physicians or the regulators. Medical writers require an understanding of the medical concepts and terminology, knowledge of relevant guidelines as regards the structure and contents of specific documents, and good writing skills. They also need to be familiar with searching medical literature, understanding and presenting research data, the document review process, and editing and publishing requirements. Many resources are now available for medical writers to get the required training in the science and art of medical writing, and upgrade their knowledge and skills on an ongoing basis. The demand for medical writing is growing steadily in pharmaceutical and healthcare communication market. Medical writers can work independently or be employed as full time professionals. Life sciences graduates can consider medical writing as a valuable career option.
Survey results show that Medical Writers use a fair number of skills. Most notably, facility with Project Management, Regulatory Compliance, and Technical Writing are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 39 percent, 34 percent, and 13 percent, respectively. Those listing Grant Writing as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. Most people experienced in Clinical Research also know Technical Writing. For many Medical Writers, more experience generally translates to higher pay. Folks with fewer than five years of experience take home $70K on average, and those who have worked for five to 10 years see a bigger median salary of $83K. On average, Medical Writers make $98K following one to two decades on the job. Medical Writers who have acquired more than 20 years of relevant experience earn significantly more than folks with fewer years on their resumes; the average income in this veteran group is $120K.
We provide Medical and Scientific writing course in two levels as Professional Designation for undergraduate students and Advance PG Program for Graduated Students. The details of the courses are as below:
The demand for medical writing has gone up considerably in the last few years. The reasons are many – more research studies are being conducted today in the biomedical field; pharmaceutical companies are developing more new drugs and medical devices, and various scientific documents need to be generated for submission to regulatory authorities during their approval process; the number of biomedical journals has gone up considerably and many more scientific articles are now published than before; similarly, with the addition of a new and a powerful medium like the ‘internet’ a lot of medical information is generated as ‘web content’ for medical professionals as well as for the general public.
According to the Center Watch analysis the medical writing market has doubled in size in the last five years, increasing from an estimated $345 million in 2003 to $694 million in 2008. Moreover, according to a separate survey, medical writing is also the fourth most frequently outsourced service. As pharmaceutical companies outsource more and more work to Asia, Indian graduates can look at medical writing as a valuable career option, and develop knowledge and skills required to take this up as a full-time profession.