Medical Affairs

M Affairs

Career Tracks

Medical Affairs Clinical Research and Operations- Design and manage Phase IIIB and IV clinical trials; safety, regulatory, assess risk, benefits and new therapeutic applications.

Medical Communications and Information- Researches, analyzes, aggregates and communicates scientific and medical data to customers and the company.

  • Medical Information- provide technical support for doctors and other health care professionals and well as patients and caregivers. 
  • Competitive Intelligence- gathers and analyzes data about comparable products in other companies.
  • Scientific Publications- Reports clinical trial results; for publications, meetings, continuing medical education (CME) events through abstracts, posters, booklets and reprints.
  • Library Sciences- manage medical libraries.

Continuing Medical Education, Medical Education or Medical Marketing- As part of marketing, educate doctors about product.

Medical Science Liaisons (MSLs)- Working closely with sales reps, providing expertise about products and diseases. 

Drug Safety, Pharmacovigilance- monitoring drugs for adverse effects during clinical trials and after drug approvals.

Data Management and Biostatistics- handle and analyze large volumes of information generated from clinical trials.

Are you a good Candidate? 

People who flourish tend to have:
  • Competency and knowledgesolid understanding of technical material, serve as expert resource and well prepared
  • Outstanding communication skillsspeaking, writing and reading are a must; in small and large groups
  • Flexibility with prioritizations and schedulingneed to be adaptable, able to quickly re-prioritize and willing to drop current task for new demand
  • A "Team player" attitudework in a multidisciplinary and collaborative environment, be a friendly, supportive and responsible team member
  • A creative and flexible mindstrong problem solving skills, ability to think strategically, open-minded
  • The ability to work independently
  • Good judgementknow when to ask questions, solve problems and how to make decisions on one's own
  • Gregarious, outgoing personalitieshigh level of contact with customers, communication with many individuals
  • Excellent time, organizational and project management skills and ability to multitaskwork on many projects simultaneously and ability to manage external contractors
  • An Interest in science and desire to learn new technologiesrequires continuous advanced learning

Tips to entry or path to

  • Consider working in clinical development first; develop an intimate understanding of disease states, learn about pharmacology- current therapies and needs of health care field.
  • Apply to companies with products already on the market.
  • Consider joining a contract research organization (CRO)- tend to hire people with scientific and medical backgrounds who don't have prior experience.
  • Consider joining an agency that provides services to the medical affairs department; continuing medical education (CME) and medical communication agencies seek specialists to run their programs and interact with companies.
  • If interested in MSL, talk to liaisons and sale reps. Often recruited or referred.
  • If in a clinical practice, become involved in investigator-sponsored trials.
  • Apply to fellowships or residencies in a biopharmaceutical company or serve as an advisor for CME programs. Show your expertise in the field.