During my PhD, I found that I preferred writing about my research rather than actually doing the experiments in the lab! I soon realised that a career in academia just wasn’t for me and began to investigate other potential options.
I discovered market access through a ‘Careers Beyond Academia’ event organised for postgraduate students at my university. From talking to people working in the field, it seemed that a medical writing career in market access could be a perfect fit. This event inspired me to seek additional opportunities to further develop my writing skills as I completed my PhD. I prepared manuscripts and presentations, and wrote articles for a student science magazine. I was also happy to successfully apply for an internship with BioNews, in which I researched and wrote weekly articles for publication online. As well as an opportunity to develop my skills, this allowed me to make sure that a step away from the lab and into medical writing would be the right move for me.
After a brief postdoc position, I started my first role as a medical writer in a market access consultancy firm around 5 years ago. Straight away I was able to use and build on the skills that I had developed during my time at university. However, I found that as I became more experienced, I was beginning to spend less time on writing and more time on project management.
I joined AMICULUM Access 1 year ago in a role that allows me to focus on the research and writing side of projects, and develop my career path based on my own skills and interests. One of the things that I like the most about working as a medical writer in market access is the variability and the fact that you are always learning. I particularly enjoy developing value stories and global value dossiers, which involve communicating the unique value of new treatments in an effective and impactful way. I have worked on projects supporting novel treatments in several therapy areas, and although I have worked on a broad range of projects, including literature reviews, advisory boards and publications, there are still project types that I have not yet worked on. Project deliverables range from Word reports to PowerPoint presentations and infographics. At AMICULUM Access there are also opportunities to work with other healthcare communication agencies within AMICULUM.
Overall, this is a rewarding career as the projects that you contribute to are ultimately helping treatments get to patients. I would recommend considering a career in market access writing to anyone with a similar experience who enjoys communicating science but is unsure about academia.
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