Tuesday, December 9, 2008

#27: From medical assistant to medical writer?

I think I have mentioned in one of my earliest posts that you don’t need to be a medical doctor to be a medical writer. As long as you have a science-related tertiary education qualification, you can be trained to become a medical writer. Even a medical assistant who is interested to write may consider medical writing on a part-time basis, or even turn it into a full-time career later.

In case you would like to know more about the job of a medical assistant, here’s some information.

A medical assistant is basically the assistant to a doctor. People who want to become a medical assistant have to go through medical assistant training.

A doctor is usually extremely busy consulting patients in his or her office, and needs to focus on providing direct patient care. Therefore, a doctor relies a lot on his or her medical assistant to keep the office running smoothly. The responsibilities of a medical assistant vary from day to day (or from hour to hour, in fact). At times the medical assistant have to perform clerical work (e.g. record keeping, appointment scheduling, billing) and some times assist the doctor in carrying out clinical duties (e.g. simple lab tests, changing dressings and sutures, assisting doctor in administering electrocardiograms, explaining medication and procedures to patients). In short, a medical assistant is not like any other assistant jobs; a certain level of professional medical knowledge is required.

Medical assistant programs are usually available in the medical faculty of universities. In the US, there are also specialized schools - medical assistant schools - that provide further specialized medical assistant trainings in different areas of health care, including (but not limited to):

• X-ray technician training
• Occupational therapy assistant training
• Natural health practitioner training
• Massage therapy training
• Medical laboratory technician training
• Physical therapy training
• Dental assistant training
• Diagnostic medical sonography training

As you can see, being a medical assistant gives you an edge in medical writing, because you have already possessed a certain degree of knowledge about the healthcare industry. You also have had experience in patient care. Those knowledge and experience you acquired will help you in your medical writing, e.g. understand medical presentation more easily, recognize the important aspects to be included in a patient healthcare brochure, etc.

So, if you a medical assistant who wishes to write, by all means give medical writing a try. You can start off writing part-timely at the beginning. If you like it and feel that medical writing is a ‘new’ career path you wish to pursuit, then I would say give it a go! :)

P.S. Vice versa, if you are a medical writer now, but thinks that it’s time to switch career for good, there’s nothing wrong with that either. :)


Monday, December 8, 2008

A quick update

Oops (a big one)! Looks like I'd been through another long session of hibernation. ;)

Just a quick update here. I had been busy with lots of things in the past 6 months, both work and personal affairs. I am still writing on a freelance basis, providing my writing services to researchers who need help on putting together background literature related to certain psychiatric disorders. Interesting, huh? I'm glad that I still have my sanity in tact after writing so much about mental illnesses. ;)

Anyway, I would like to thank some blog readers who dropped their comments in my blog, and sorry that I only saw them now.

First of all, thanks to Notarazi.

Notarazi has given a link to download a PDF file called 'The Complete Guide to Medical Writing'. You all can access the download page by clicking here. The size of this file is around 10 Mb, so you may need a little bit of patience if your internet connection is slow. (I'm downloading the file now, and am trying to be very patient...)

To ZayZayEM, thanks for your question, but let me answer that in a separate post one of these days. I promise I will answer it before I go hibernating again. ;P


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Back in action again

I know I have been ‘hibernating’ for half a year here. Sorry to keep you waiting :)

This extremely long hiatus is partly due to a continuous stream of freelance writing assignments that I received over the past 6 months. Although not highly paid, I manage to make a moderate living out of it.

That’s one advantage of being a medical writer. You could go on a freelance basis once you acquired the necessary experience and skills. What if the local job opportunities for medical writers are limited? Well, you can always explore the possibility of working overseas.

The job prospect for medical writers is very good in UK, and their incomes are lucrative. With excellent medical writing skills and ability to produce high-quality materials, and depending on experience, one can earn a salary as much as £60,000 per year as a medical writer in a healthcare and medical communication company!

Use online job search engines or any recruitment agency to help you out. There is a possibility that you may find a line of medical writing Jobs In Manchester waiting to be filled up. (That's one way to be near to your favorite football team, huh?) ;)

Why not try to do a quick search on www.search.co.uk? Even if you are no longer interested in a writing career, you can also use it to locate other jobs, such as Pharmaceutical jobs or accounting jobs.

Okay, I've gone too far. Let's get back to this blog. ;)

The other reason for my long absence is that I’m still in the middle of finding a new direction and ideas for this blog. I have so far touched on all the various types of project that I had involved in as a fulltime medical writer. Perhaps it’s time to talk a little bit more about project management, which includes weekly meeting and ‘managing’ clients. ;)

What else would you like to know? Any suggestions?


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

#26: Writing tips on the internet

As medical writers, we need to constantly practice and sharpen our writing skills to able us communicate more effectively with our readers.

Besides referring to writing guidebooks, reading up some good articles produced from good writers and learn from them definitely helps us to write better.

Well, you may also conveniently find some good general writing tips on the internet, such as from the Daily Writing Tips. Sometimes we do need to refresh our 'memory' on the proper application of even the simplest grammar and punctuation, or learn the 101 rules for writing numbers. Believe it or not, numbers and numerals can be very confusing if not written in the right way.

If you are also keen to learn about fiction writing and business writing, then do drop by Daily Writing Tips to see what they have to offer. :)


Sunday, January 6, 2008

#25: Besides being where I am now

Since it is still the first week of 2008, let's put the seemingly never-ending projects aside for the time being and talk about something more inspiring. ;)

What are the career prospects of a medical writer when he or she no longer wishes to work in a medical communications company?

Well, pharmaceutical companies and research organizations need medical writers. The type of writing needed in those institutions may be very different from what you are doing right now, but you will be able to adjust your writing style once you have undergone some training and practice.

Being a freelance medical writer is also an option. As a freelance writer, you can offer custom research papers writing or custom essay writing services to individuals such as medical researchers or even college students. Don't be surprise that there is a great demand for such services.

Of course, it is up to your own deliberation whether you should take on this type of projects. Are you willing to help a college student to write custom essays that are part of his semester assignment? ;)


  © Blogger templates The Professional Template by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP