After navigating the world of academia, I have come to realise that market access writing is one of the best-kept secrets among the expansive landscape of scientific careers.

At the end of my biochemistry PhD, I decided that the trials and tribulations of the academic lifestyle were not for me. I found myself less interested in the nitty gritty detail of a molecular structure and more interested in potential real-world medical applications of my research. Unfortunately, even the finest academic work may not have a real-world application for many years – or worse – never!

This is where ‘market access’ comes in; a place for scientific, pharmaceutical and medical minds to come together at the leading edge of medical innovation. At OPEN Health, I work as part of a close-knit team of project managers, associate consultants, senior consultants, medical writers and health economists. Together, we provide solutions that enable pharmaceutical and medical device companies to bring a medical product to the market. All of the above means exposure to a wide spectrum of diseases, therapeutic pathways and novel treatments.

As a consultant writer, I am responsible for developing written materials that communicate the key benefits and value of an upcoming treatment to a variety of stakeholders, including patients, clinicians, formulary managers, regulatory institutions and reimbursement bodies. These materials include value dossiers, health technology assessments/reimbursement submission dossiers and visually impactful PowerPoint presentations. Beyond writing, some projects also give me the chance to get creative – especially when translating text-heavy supporting evidence into an array of colourful infographics and figures, or when developing interactive virtual workshops. A fundamental pillar of market access writing is to always ask myself “How will this therapy help patients in ways that other therapies do not?”.

It is also important to remain in close contact with clients and all project team members. Clients are typically reliant on your familiarity with the data and supporting evidence, as you are often closer to it than any other member of the team. A writer may expect to attend client meetings to provide an update on progress, discuss content or even listen in to take notes.

Having worked in market access for 3.5 years, I can confidently say that it has been a life-changing experience with ample opportunity to learn and grow as an expert in healthcare. I feel extremely grateful to work in a supportive team of market access, real-world evidence and HEOR specialists with a positive ‘can-do’ attitude at OPEN Health. People really go out of their way to help each other, and senior management make efforts to place us on projects that suit both our interests and strengths. On a personal level, I take great pride in ensuring that patients gain access to much-needed treatments that can significantly improve their day-to-day life, and even prolong survival. If you’re looking to play a key role in giving patients access to medical therapies, market access writing could be for you.

This personal profile first appeared in the FirstMedCommsJob careers guide, Evidence generation and communication: a guide to getting started in HEOR/market access medical writing, published June 2022

One thought on “David Bode, Senior Consultant Writer, OPEN Health, Evidence & Access

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