Medical writing jobs are a good alternative for professionals looking for non-clinical work in healthcare. This kind of writing spans general medical topics, regulatory issues and even medical research. Medical writing is found in a range of media including healthcare websites, marketing and product packaging, and medical textbooks.
What kind of clients offer medical writing jobs?
Many employers in the healthcare industry require the services of medical writers. These include government healthcare institutions, research organizations, companies that publish medical textbooks, medical device manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, companies dealing in medical communication or managed care and medical facilities, universities, medical journals, media organizations, professional associations, and many more.
Lots of medical communicators function on a contract basis or as freelancers. Freelance writing is widespread as the work is often project based. The work may be done in either an office or home setting.
Medical writing has two major categories – clinical and marketing – writers work for firms specializing in medical writing and editing or in the public relations, advertising or journalism fields.
Content produced by medical writers
Some examples of materials produced are web copy, abstracts, posters, seminar reports, articles, manuscripts for journals, training aids like educational material, lecture notes, slides and patient brochures.
Materials are prepared with different audiences in mind, from patients to medical representative, laymen to healthcare professionals. And they are recorded on a variety of media such as online, brochures, journals etc.
Skill sets required
Good writing skills are an obvious prerequisite. A writer should be able to produce grammatically correct, accurate copy and meet deadlines. Therefore efficient time management is also vital.
If you want to become a medical writer, you should at least have a Bachelor’s degree, preferably in the Life Sciences. Most medical communicators hold a Master’s. A degree in journalism or communication is an added advantage.
As a medical writer, you will be required to write about a variety of diseases, body systems and therapies. So it is important that writers in this field keep up with the latest industry trends and advances.
Demand and compensation
As health care has traditionally been recession-proof, demand for medical writing has always been strong, and the salaries competitive. As awareness among the lay audience about health issues grows in tandem with scientific innovation, there is a greater need for medical writers who can write concise copy that is easily understood.
Where to find medical writing jobs
Medical writing jobs can be easily found online. Both specialist and freelancing job bulletin boards may post writing jobs. Often, you may find medical writing job listings on the websites of organizations belonging to the health industry. Biotechnology firms, pharmaceutical companies, and medical device manufacturers usually have ongoing requirements for medical writers. In addition, associations dedicated to professional writing, as well as online freelance networks and groups post job vacancies for medical writers.
So if you want to use your medical knowledge without getting into the field of clinical or scientific research, medical writing may just be the right profession for you.