Hand-Pick Your Medical Translation Agency’s Healthcare Experts

The Advantages of Working with Tight-Knit Medical Document Translation Teams

Hand-Pick Your Medical Translation Agency’s Healthcare ExpertsHand-pick your medical document translation service‘s team members — and then reap the many business advantages that come from working with a tight-knit medical translation team dedicated to delivering the best medical device or pharmaceutical label translations possible.

Medical device manufacturers and pharmaceutical concerns that invest financial resources into hiring a professional translation agency should also invest time into verifying that the experts selected for their projects can (and will) work together in small, close-knit groups. These teams, with members selected based on a project’s linguistic and regulatory needs should be comprised of experienced healthcare and life-science translators able to cooperate intimately with one another over the long-haul. This close cooperation will help ensure the on time delivery and quality level of your translated medical product documents, with every update and release.

Why Work with Hand-Picked Medical Translation Teams?

Regardless if you’re in the market for French document translation services, or looking for a medical translation agency that handles Asian languages like Chinese, Korean or Japanese, hand-picked medical translation teams are essential for creating accurate medical documents. The localization process also gets a boost when in-county team members — with detailed information about how specific medical terminology is used in the nation or region you’re translating for — contribute to the team’s overall efforts to build translations that satisfy the local medical regulations governing device labels or instructions for use that your company will need to comply with.

By keeping the translation teams small, intimate and focused on the task at hand, your medical translation agency’s project manager can closely monitor your medical document translations through a continuously running translation memory (TM) database. Translation memory is a tool that allows for a constant comparison (fuzzy or identical matches) between the source medical text and the translated text, all loaded onto the TM database. This streamlined and detailed approach lets the project manager, along with your certified translators and medical experts easily access and work with different files located inside the translation management system (TMS).

And when an independent team comes along to review the translations for accuracy, they’ll have access to the translation management system as well, ensuring that everyone involved in a particular medical translation project is on the same page — literally and metaphorically.

This type of well-organized cooperation is only possible when the project manager, and everyone else from a medical document translation service nominated for a team, are at the top of their professional game. And even if the editors and proofreaders remain anonymous to the original translators (which helps ensure honest and candid edits, editorial comments, and the assembly of the finalized documents), the project manager will still benefit from selecting (with the client’s approval) an experienced team from the very beginning of a project.

Qualities to Look for in a Medical Translation Agency’s Team Members

When you and your professional translation agency build your healthcare translation team, it’s important to know what qualities to look for in the medical experts your hire. Here are some of the most important skills and qualifications your translation team members will need:

  • In-country translation and real world (day-to-day) experience for the regions and countries where the target language(s) are spoken.
  • Medical and scientific education covering the medical fields translated, as well as an up-to-date understating of medical terminology and general healthcare trends.
  • Experience with medical trials, foreign medical regularity bodies, bureaucratic norms, and the official paperwork involved in setting up foreign-based clinical trials (if applicable to your project).
  • Native fluency of the target languages with near native fluency of the source.
  • Experience working on translation teams and with translation management systems.
  • Intimate knowledge of specialized medical jargon in the source and target languages, plus the ability to spot differences in how jargon is used in different linguistic regions.
  • Knowledge of local culture, political issues affecting healthcare, what drugs and medical procedure are allowed and what procedures are taboo to even talk about, and the ability to predict or handle any healthcare ethical concerns that may arise.
  • The capacity to craft quality prose in the target language. Being a native speaker doesn’t necessarily guarantee someone is a solid writer in their native tongue. Make sure they are.

While every team member likely won’t have all of these skills, it’s import that they have enough of them — and that the entire team has all of these skills collectively — to ensure the delivery of quality medical device translations.

For example, French translation services working on healthcare translations for francophone countries like the Democratic Republic of the Congo or Senegal would need to hire French translators, French-speaking medical and regional experts familiar with different French dialects spoken in Africa, and project managers who’ve handled assignments involving French document translation services in Africa before — all with the aim of completing a regional translation project successfully.

How to Avoid Medical Document Translation Scams and Frauds

Last, but not least, be wary of medical document translation frauds and scams. According to Slator, a lot of dodgy actors have been passing themselves off as certified translators or translation agencies recently by obtaining real translators’ CVs (resumes), then altering some of the details on those CVs to scam unsuspecting clients.

By paying close attention to the team your professional translation agency selects to work on your medical device or pharmaceutical documents, and by making sure your medical document translation service knows exactly who it’s working with (keep an eye out for fraudsters with websites like the Translator Scammers Directory), you can greatly reduce the risk of poor quality translations or fraud.

If possible, keep the majority of a translation team intact throughout the follow-up and updating processes that will inevitably accompany most translated medical materials. This tactic can help healthcare companies avoid the rampant translation scams and frauds found online, while guaranteeing that their commissioned medical translations meet the highest quality standards at the same time.


Medical TranslationRead our whitepaper 5 Case Studies in Medical Translation & Localization, a 10 minute read that will help you understand some of the challenges involved and how to overcome them! You can also register to attend the 15 minute free healthcare Translation webinar.