CME Medical Writing
Last Updated: 04 May 2019
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So You Want to Become a Medical Writer?
Healthcare professionals’ interest in nonclinical careers and part-time roles, especially medical writing, continues to grow.
It’s no wonder. Burnout is on the rise in healthcare, clinical innovations feel centuries away for certain conditions, and medical malpractice is a constant threat. And don’t even start with the paperwork.
However, a sizable proportion of clinicians will have no interest in or knowledge of medical writing as a viable nonclinical career option.
And you know what? That’s OK. It’s better to be drawn toward something outside of clinical practice than to be pushed out.
To become a successful medical writer, you’ll first have to know exactly why you want to be one in the first place.
Why Are You Interested in Medical Writing?
We have heard from hundreds of clinicians who all said they were interested in medical writing. We have an obvious sample bias here because those who were not interested tend to ignore us. It happens.
As we mentioned, there are so many reasons healthcare professionals – physicians, PA’s, pharmacists, NP’s, and others – would be interested in this field.
Here are a select few.
Some Reasons Clinicians Start Medical Writing:
However, many healthcare professionals interested in medical writing have only dabbled in writing, let alone medical writing. More surprisingly, some have never even tried any type of writing outside the EMR!
If you can relate, don’t beat yourself up. You probably never tried being a clinician before applying to your postgraduate training program, either. But look at you now! Patient care is way harder than writing, so who’s to say you can’t do both?
And again, there is nothing wrong with not wanting to write. As healthcare professionals, we need to allow ourselves – and each other – a break here and there. That doesn’t mean a different type of work is any less important than another.
So if you want to be a medical writer, but haven’t started yet, you may have some reasons for hesitating. The truth is, most people delay, or avoid it for a few common reasons.
Some Reasons Clinicians Do NOT Start Medical Writing:
These are totally legitimate concerns. The inclination towards medical writing probably feels somewhat natural for clinicians seeking a nonclinical role. However, the skills to be a successful medical writer are certainly not.
Medical writing is as diverse a field as medicine itself, and it can take years to learn the medical writing skills you need.
That’s why we put together a list of resources for clinicians and others interested in medical writing here.
It’s a growing list of books, courses, and articles that help answer your questions about medical writing.
Whether you are not sure if it’s right for you or you want to jump right in, we have put together some of the most useful resources around for you.
You can also contact us to apply to be on our panel of medical writers. When we have a project that needs someone with your expertise and background, we’ll get in touch.
You can also pitch us an idea for a guest post for publication here on Modern MedEd. Here’s a hint: your to the editor email is your first writing audition. That’s true everywhere, not just here.
Have you ever thought about getting into medical writing as a means of pursuing a goal such as influencing your field, positioning yourself as a thought leader, or making a living (or supplementary income)?
If you answered yes, why haven’t you done so?
Medical Writing Courses & Resources
Click here for a list of resources and courses that will teach you how to start a successful medical writing career of your own.
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Jordan G. Roberts, PA-C writes engaging, compelling medical education. His experience makes him a go-to consultant for companies of all sizes with a diverse clinical audience. He is a nationally recognized speaker, published scientific author, and medical podcaster. His goal is to deliver excellence in all facets of medical education.
Feel free to get in touch with Jordan to check the availability of his speaking schedule or to get more information on his consulting and editorial services.