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Medical and Pharmaceutical Translation - The Need for a Specialist

The globalisation of business has led to the need for the medical and pharmaceutical industries to simultaneously satisfy the requirements of regulatory authorities, including submission of information in a variety of languages. For example, those pharmaceutical companies submitting a marketing authorisation application in order to fulfil EU dossier requirements must provide a summary of product characteristics (Part IB), labelling information and a patient information leaflet in every official EU language. In addition, there are often layout requirements and the need to use phrase constructions that are fixed and mandatory. Finally, similar requirements also apply to CE Marking related documentation for the medical devices market. Only a professional and specialised company can provide the expertise needed for this sort of demanding translation work.

To work as a translator, a person must not only be fluent in multiple languages, but also have the academic foundation upon which to base a thorough understanding of the current status and terminology of highly specialised areas of business, law, technology, economy and health care. The translator must have a solid linguistic education.


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By Arthur P. Leccese of Wilkens c.s. in the Netherlands Dr Arthur P. Leccese holds a PhD in Physiological Psychology. For two decades, he conducted research and taught courses in psychopharmacology in the US After working with several pharmaceutical firms in the Netherlands, he joined Wilkens c.s. as a Translator of medical-pharmaceutical texts.
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