Ensuring Accurate Translations for Medical and Pharmaceutical Businesses

Precise language is of paramount importance in fields that involve the life sciences. A failure to accurately convey information can result in setbacks to research, and it can put the lives of consumers at risk. 

In order to avoid the risks that come with miscommunications and misinterpretations, enlisting a professional translation firm can be your best safeguard. 

The medical and pharmaceutical industries are far too technical and precision is too important to forego anything but the highest quality translations. 

The Importance of Accuracy in Medical Translation 

For any organization that operates globally, the need for accuracy in language is essential. While the desire to communicate with people is important, for a company that works in fields relating to pharmaceuticals and medicine, there is a lot more at stake. 

If a company is developing a new medical device or drug, translation errors could result in a costly setback to the development process. Inaccurate language could lead to faulty research, cause problems in the production process, and once the product is available to the public, translations errors could put the health of consumer at risk. 

Ensuring the accuracy of translations starts with the original English documentation. The original documents need to convey information in a way that is clear and concise. Clarity in the source documents will make it easier to maintain precision in the translations. 

When you are talking about documents in complex fields like medicine, you want to have the translations performed by an individual that has an expert’s understanding of the specific field. This not only ensures the accuracy of language, but it also ensures that various technical terms are translated and used correctly in the target language. 

In a situation like this, any misunderstanding could put the lives of patients at risk. Your company could be held liable for any damages, and beyond the financial cost of such an incident, it could also have a negative effect on your reputation. 

A reputable life sciences translation agency will have a team of subject matter experts (SMEs) to ensure the highest accuracy and quality when translating documentation and other materials. With poorly translated documents, you could also lose potential investors. 

When investors put their money into a company, they vet the business for any potential signs of trouble. If they find that medical documents and instructions are poorly translated, it could affect their view of a business. 

The Need for Field-Specific Knowledge 

With an experienced translator, there should be no problems when it comes to translating even the most technical of documents. However, the translator should also have a strong understanding of the laws and regulations that apply in the region. 

They should additionally be aware of various region-specific terms or jargon. When a medical or pharmaceutical company hires a translator, they should make sure that they have the necessary experience with translating documents for the target region. 

Along with adequate experience with translating for the target region, it is also necessary to find a translator that has experience with the subject matter. As an example, consider a company that needs translations for documents that are related to a blood pressure medication. 

A suitable candidate for this project would be a translator that has a degree in pharmaceutical sciences. Ideally, this translator would not only have the relevant educational background, but also they would also have experience with translating documents that are similar to the ones involved in the project. 

In the case of medical documentation, it is not just about accuracy of language. You also have to meet certain regulatory obligations and industry standards. 

Maintain Quality Across All Documents 

As a pharmaceutical or medical company that operates globally, accuracy for things like drug labels, medical device instructions and clinical studies is important. However, you want to go out of your way to maintain precise language across all of your documents. 

If you have promotional materials or a website that needs to be translated for a foreign language audience, accuracy is essential. Your digital presence and marketing media will be the first way that many patients and medical professionals encounter your company. 

If the translations are sloppy or inaccurate, it will set the wrong impression. With professional medical translations, doctors will feel more secure treating their patients with your products, and patients will feel safer using them. 

There is a lot that can go wrong when you translate any document into a foreign language. When it comes to documents associated with medicine or pharmaceuticals, these risks are even greater. When you hire a professional translator that has the necessary skills, you are doing more than just making sure that a message gets across. 

Accurate translations will protect your reputation in the industry and it will also ensure that your products are safe for the people that will use them. 

Sirena Rubinoff is the Content Manager at Morningside Translations. She earned her B.A. and Master’s Degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern. After completing her graduate degree, Sirena won an international fellowship as a Rotary Cultural Ambassador to Jerusalem. Sirena covers topics related to software and website localization, global business solutions, and the translation industry as a whole.
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