I trained in medicine and, after completing my medical registration and discovering it was not a career I wished to pursue, began exploring alternatives. Medical writing seemed a good way of combining my qualifications and interest in writing, and I joined a medical publishing company as a medical writer in a non-agency setting. I initially wrote single-agent drug reviews across a wide range of therapeutic areas. Over time, my role transitioned into training and mentoring new medical writers and upskilling experienced medical writers, as well as establishing standard operating procedures and a training and mentoring programme.
In 2017, it was time for a change and healthcare communications beckoned. I joined AMICULUM as a medical writer and have been part of the publications team since 2018.
So, what do I enjoy about being a publications medical writer within a healthcare communications agency? It is fast paced and combines multiple skills: data interpretation, data visualisation, writing and publications planning, as well as managing timelines and seeing complex projects from conception through to publication. It is also a constantly evolving field, with the COVID-19-induced shift to virtual congresses, a growing use of innovative enhanced content and increasing emphasis on plain-language material. There are always new skills to acquire and more to learn.
I am lucky to work with a fantastic team of knowledgeable, agile, adaptable publications professionals and I find the role strikes a good balance between autonomy and teamwork. You can take ownership of your projects and drive them forward, knowing you have a great bunch of supportive colleagues backing you up.
The role has also allowed me to continue training and mentoring new writers. Seeing new writers flourish as they develop their skills and grow in confidence is something I really enjoy.
After rapidly transitioning from one therapeutic area to another every few weeks in my previous role, it has been particularly satisfying to gain an in-depth knowledge of a single therapeutic area and have the opportunity to build good working relationships with both the client and investigators. I love working in this therapeutic area and am fortunate to have witnessed the transformation of the treatment landscape and patient outcomes. Assisting the client and investigators to effectively communicate the results of their practice-changing trials through the publication of abstracts, congress presentations, manuscripts and enhanced content has been very rewarding.
This personal profile first appeared in the FirstMedCommsJob careers guide, Ensuring timely dissemination of research: a guide to working as a medical publications professional, published September 2022
One thought on “Gillian Keating, Cence, an AMICULUM agency”