While working towards a master’s degree in global health, I realised that academia was not for me, but I wasn’t sure what other options were available. I started looking for a role that combines science with writing and creative thinking, while also offering a healthy work–life balance. I first heard of MedComms at a university careers event and was drawn to the idea of working outside of a lab, but still within science, by writing about the latest research on different diseases.

While working towards a master’s degree in global health, I realised that academia was not for me, but I wasn’t sure what other options were available. I started looking for a role that combines science with writing and creative thinking, while also offering a healthy work–life balance. I first heard of MedComms at a university careers event and was drawn to the idea of working outside of a lab, but still within science, by writing about the latest research on different diseases.

After a successful interview, I started working at Fishawack Health (FH) in August 2020 and immediately got involved in ongoing projects across two different teams. I found the fast-paced, deadline-driven environment exciting. I was still new to the world of MedComms, so accessing the right training was crucial to helping me hit the ground running while supporting my colleagues from day one. Our company has developed a STEPS (Supporting Training and Enhancing Professional Skills) Foundation training programme for entry-level medical writers. The training helped me develop essential skills for the role, such as translating complex information into compelling narratives, and allowed me to connect with other junior writers, all with varying paths into this industry and role. I was also reassured by the variety of career paths open to me, depending on whether I want to focus more on the data and pure science, internal management or interactions with clients. In addition, all FH employees have access to an online career development platform (FUEL50) to help map out our ideal career path, whichever direction we choose, offering me flexibility and structure as I develop my skills and interests.

As a medical writer, I have the unique opportunity to learn about multiple diseases and treatments, while also applying my creative side and diving into the details of the data. On a day-to-day basis, I work in publications (developing manuscripts, abstracts, videos, patient materials) and medical affairs (preparing slide decks for advisory boards and writing up meeting reports). I’ve also had the opportunity to attend medical congresses (though so far only virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic). I enjoy the balance of working independently while also interacting with colleagues, pharmaceutical clients and medical experts in the field.

If you enjoy communicating science and research in a variety of ways and to different audiences, then medical writing might be for you. I’d recommend researching MedComms agencies, the therapy areas they focus on and the scope of work they do as they all offer slightly different opportunities. In addition, don’t be discouraged from applying for a medical writing role if you don’t have a PhD or post-doc experience – while these are useful, it’s the transferrable skills and a willingness to learn new things that are essential.


This personal profile first appeared in the FirstMedCommsJob careers guide, From academic to medical writer: a guide to getting started in medical communications, published March 2022.

Meet representatives from Fishawack Health on 19 September. Meanwhile, find out more about them here.

One thought on “Ewa Kilinska, Senior Medical Writer, Fishawack Health

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