Medical Communications - Senior Medical Writer
A medical writer is key member of the editorial team within a medical communications agency. A medical communications agency is tasked by their clients who are usually large pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device, healthcare or clinical research organisations to develop communication strategies that will assist in the delivery of effective campaigns.
The role of a medical writer is to write high-quality scientific copy for the wide range of materials that a medical communications agency produces. The scientific and medical information and the language used in these documents written by medical writers will be tailored to suit the target audience, this could be patients, medical sales representatives, doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals. Documents created by Medical Writers for medical professionals is usually highly scientific but often those intended for patients and the general public will also be written in clear, simple terms with minimal scientific jargon.
Materials include primary papers, Reviews, Education materials, case studies, newsletters, conference materials, websites, slide kits, posters, videos, sales aids.
Medical writers are required to keep updated on new developments within any given scientific field and therapeutic area, being aware of the strategies used by clients competitors and advising.
A senior medical writer will do all of this and may be given the responsibility of mentoring more junior members of the team, liaise regularly with clients, travel globally to attend conferences, advisory boards and standalone meetings.
A principal medical writer will do all of that and in addition may lead an editorial team, consult clients on publication plans and strategy, liaise with the client service and project management teams within the agency and run and/or attend new client pitches.
Skills and Experience required to become a Medical Writer
- Degree in one of the life sciences (ideally PhD)
- Excellent writing skills including the correct use of grammar, punctuation and spelling
- The ability to adapt the language to communicate effectively with a specific target audience
- Understanding of scientific and medical terminology
- Attention to detail
- Good time management, able to meet deadlines
- Good communication & coordination skills, able to work with various stakeholders
- Knowledge of specific therapeutic areas e.g. oncology, diabetes can be beneficial
The demand for medical writers is growing steadily and medical writing can be an excellent career option for Life Sciences graduates. It can be difficult to secure an entry-level Associate Medical Writer (AMW) role, which typically has a salary in the “mid 20s”. Once you have gained some tangible experience in medical writing, especially if you specialise in a highly sought-after therapeutic area, the salary progression for medical writers is very buoyant as you progress to each next phase of your career as a medical writer. People tend to follow a path from Associate Medical Writer to Medical Writer, to Senior Medical Writer, to Principal Writer. The salary bandings for medical writes progress significantly with each step up. Furthermore, there is a lively contract / freelance market for experienced medical writers, for which the daily rates can vary from £250 to £500+ per day.
Ireland's Life Sciences sector has grown rapidly from modest beginnings in the 1960s to reach global significance. Collaborative clusters in Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, Medical Devices and Diagnostics have been a key element behind this remarkable growth in a sector that accounts for 32% of GDP.
The sector continues to develop and evolve, more recently Ireland has expanded its global hub beyond commercialisation to include innovation, digitalisation and next generation technologies.
Ireland is the 3rd largest exporter of pharmaceuticals globally.
85+ Pharmaceutical companies operate in Ireland - and it has 9 of the world's top pharmaceutical companies.
50 FDA approved pharma and biopharma plants.
Dublin is the capital and largest city of Ireland. Situated on a bay on the East Coast, at the mouth of the River Liffey, it lies within the province of Leinster. It is bordered on the south by the Dublin Mountains, a part of the Wicklow Mountains range.
Dublin is the largest centre of education in Ireland, and is home to four universities and a number of other higher education institutions. It was the European Capital of Science in 2012.
The University of Dublin is the oldest University in Ireland, dating from the 16th century, and is located in the city centre. Its sole constituent college, Trinity College (TCD), was established by Royal Charter in 1592 under Elizabeth I. It was closed to Roman Catholics until 1793, and the Catholic hierarchy then banned Roman Catholics from attending until 1970. It is situated in the city centre, on College Green, and has over 18,000 students.
The National University of Ireland (NUI) has its seat in Dublin, which is also the location of the associated constituent university of University College Dublin (UCD), which has over 30,000 students. Founded in 1854, it is now the largest university in Ireland.
As of 2019, Dublin's principal, and Ireland's largest, institution for technological education and research, Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), with origins in 1887, has merged with two majour suburban third level institutions, Institute of Technology, Tallaght and Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown, to form Technological University Dublin, Ireland's second largest university by student population. The new university offers a wide range of courses in areas including engineering, architecture, scieces, health, journalism, digital media, hospitality, business, art and design, music and the humanities programmes, and has three long-term campuses, at Grangegorman, Tallaght and Blanchardstown.
Dublin City University (DCU), formerly the National Institute for Higher Education (NIHE) Dublin, offers courses in business, engineering, science, communication courses, languages and primary education. It has around 16,000 students.
The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) conducts a medical school which is both a university and a recognised college, there are also large medical schools within UCD and Trinity College. The National College of Ireland is also based in Dublin, as well as the Economic and Social Research Institute, a social science research institute.
Ireland is a great place to further your career in life sciences. If you are a looking for pharmaceutical jobs in Dublin, scientific careers in Dublin or want to discuss cell therapy, gene therapy, ATMP, medical device, technology, biotech or pharmaceutical job opportunities in Dublin, give our Next Phase team a call. The Irish area is continuing to expand as a centre for jobs in science, process development, technology, software development, project management, informatics, quality, reg affairs and supply chain.
At Next Phase we help people find new jobs in life sciences across the UK, Europe and USA. This page lists some of the job opportunities in Dublin, and if you give us a call we can also talk to you about other scientific jobs, pharmaceutical career opportunities and the latest updates in cell and gene therapy and ATMP development in the Dublin area.