It is difficult to imagine modern medicine without the constant introduction and development of diagnostic and treatment methods that have shown their effectiveness and safety. The main role in this process is played by medical writers and the publication of clinical research results in scientific journal articles. Young scientists who are just starting their professional path often face difficulties.
- Where to start?
- How to write the first medical article?
- How and where to publish it?
Today we will give you a guide on how to start a health blog and turn your medical publications into popular ones.
What Is Medical Writing?
Medical writing is about clear and accurate documents, articles, blog posts and news. Its specific task is to communicate scientific and clinical information to healthcare professionals, researchers, regulatory authorities, and patients.
Medical publication professionals work on a various range of materials:
- Medical research papers
- Clinical study reports
- Regulatory documents
- Medical devices reviews
- Articles for medical journals or blogs.
A writer isn’t necessary a doctor, but he must possess a deep understanding of medical information, scientific principles, and research methodology. Writing skills are also a must, as well as the ability to interpret information accurately and notice details.
Writers often collaborate closely with healthcare professionals, researchers, and pharmaceutical companies to make sure their content meets regulators' standards and the needs of the target audience.
Medical publications of various genres make dissemination of high-quality information in different therapeutic areas easy and fast.
Find Your Motivation
Writing articles for a scientist with a degree and experience is an effective way to maintain and improve their level and status. And why write scientific articles for a clinician who does not want to become a PhD?
Writing articles develops logical and critical thinking, the ability to analyze and synthesize information. It allows you to express yourself clearly, think structurally, and draw conclusions.
Your opportunities to present your experience, interesting clinical trials at various scientific and practical conferences and other prestigious events are expanding. The organizers determine the form of participation by evaluating your abstracts. In the case of poorly written papers, they can simply reject them. Otherwise, they can submit a poster report or an oral presentation to be included in the collection. All this contributes to professional competencies, increases self-esteem and prevents professional burnout.
A powerful motivating factor is the opportunity to receive scholarships, awards, grants. And here it is also necessary to state goals and objectives to attract experts to their project.
In addition, grantees are required to present intermediate and final research results in scientific medical publications.
How and Where to Start?
The easiest way to start is by writing theses. These are short publications reflecting your research or clinical case. Send them to scientific and practical conferences, forums, congresses.
The second step is to expand the material to a scientific article. This format requires sections, content, style, and volume.
The original article includes the following sections:
- Structured summary with keywords
- Research materials and methods
- Research results
- Sources of literature.
Compliance with Editorial Requirements
The most serious requirements are imposed on publications in international scientific peer-reviewed journals. In particular, articles must meet the authorship criteria formulated by:
- The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE)
- The European Medical Writers Association (EMWA), or
- The American Medical Writers Association (AMWA).
You should not forget that when accepting an original article, any editorial committee must check it for plagiarism. If it turns out that you have already published your work in another publication (including unscientific) or borrowed part of the text from other authors without specifying the sources, you will get into a very difficult situation and damage your reputation.
If you don't understand the editorial rules, download a few articles from this journal and see how they are designed.
Many manuscripts are discarded because they do not meet regulatory submission requirements. They don't even get into the review process.
The authors of scientific articles reserve the copyright to the work and grant the journal the right to publish the work for the first time under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which allows you to distribute this work with the obligatory preservation of references to the authors of the original work and the original publication in this journal.
The authors also reserve the right to conclude separate contractual agreements concerning the non-exclusive distribution of the work version with reference to the original publication in this journal.
In addition, authors can post their work online, on their personal websites. It is believed that this leads to productive discussion and an increase in references to this work (The Effect of Open Access). Magazines with a good reputation follow such approaches.
Useful Resources for Medical Writers
Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) is an online catalog that indexes and provides access to high-quality peer-reviewed journals with open access.
Web of Science (WoS) is one of the world's largest search platforms containing abstract databases of academic materials, considering their mutual citations.
Scopus is an automated service supported by Elsevier Publishers. Since 1996, it has tracked the citation of published scientific articles by scientists from various industries. The system covers more than 5 thousand publishing houses around the world and more than 18 thousand publications.
Google Scholar is an information system, whose information repository is all data uploaded to the Internet.
Turning Your Publications into a Blog
If you have already mastered the craft of publication planning in reputable medical journals, it’s high time to bring your knowledge into the non-scientific world.
Starting a blog online is a challenge, but our recommendations will enable you to do it without a hitch.
Thanks to the blog, potential patients can learn about your practices, work experience, and read reviews before deciding whether to contact you or not.
Provide customers with the opportunity to communicate with you via the maximum number of channels. At Medesk, setting up an online appointment link in social networks or advertising will take only 15 minutes!Learn more >>
So, blogging solves the following tasks:
- Brings targeted traffic to the site. Traffic = your potential patients
- Forms potential patients' loyalty
- Positions you as an expert in the field
- Improves site performance: articles are increasingly shown at the top
- Helps develop the clinic's brand.
How to Design a Blog on a Website
To make the articles work according to the tasks listed above, you need to arrange everything correctly. You want your potential clients to read the entire article instead of closing it. In addition, you want them to understand what site they are visiting and what services are offered.
Important! Now you are writing for an unprepared audience without a specific education. It’s crucial to use simple language and avoid jargon whenever possible.
Design the blog section the same way as the home page
Always follow the clinic's corporate style and identity. The logo, name and contact information of the clinic should be prominently displayed in the blog section. The blog should be located in the first level menu.
Pack buttons and CTA forms into the article body
This could be:
- "Get a consultation"
- "Make an appointment"
- "Learn more"
- "Open the detailed description" and so on.
Use widgets, pop-ups, and other lead generation techniques.
Link to other blog articles, as well as sections of the site
Search engines like it when a person does not leave the site for a long time and visits many sections. Blog searches are useful. This helps the patient to find the necessary articles faster.
Make transition buttons on social networks. This way you can quickly gain subscribers. There are also "share", "like" buttons and the opportunity to rate the article. All this increases engagement and affects behavioral factors.
We highly recommend that you make it possible to comment on the blog. Comments, feedback and reviews, even negative ones, are great sources of queries and medical communications for your future articles.
How to Start a blog: Step-by-step Instructions
Now let's discuss what stages blogging involves.
#1. Define the target audience
These are the people we want as patients. At this step, you need to make a portrait of the TA, including gender, age, interests, income level, marital status, etc.
For example, a woman 35-50 years old, married, a manager, lives in Glasgow.
#2. Study your competitors
Which articles are written, what patients read and comment on the most of them, how many publications per month, what templates they use and so on.
#3. Make up the semantic core
This is a list of search queries potential patients type on the Internet. For example, for dentistry it will be "dental treatment in London", "how to relieve toothache at home", "how to treat caries" and so on.
#4. Make a content plan
This is a publication schedule with article and topic release dates. Key queries from the semantic core are ready-made subject matter for articles.
Due to the individually customized reports at Medesk, you can always understand which articles and blog materials engage paying patients.Learn more >>
Some practice management software solutions integrate with EHR systems, allowing seamless access to patient information and medical records. This integration enables you to create blog posts or educational content with accurate medical data, ensuring your publications are evidence-based and reliable.
#5. Publish articles on the site
If there was no blog section on the site before, you need to create one.
PMS enables you to manage and publish content directly from the platform. You can create and organize blog posts, articles, patient education materials, and other relevant content within a centralized system.
#6. Distribute articles
To make more people read your useful materials, you need to show them. Make announcements on social networks, send them to the patient database by e-mail.
#7. Track indicators and metrics
You must know which articles are read better or dreader, and where the most potential clients come. All this is tracked in analytics systems.
Practice management software offers built-in analytics and reporting features that provide valuable insights into your blog's performance. You can track key metrics such as website traffic, page views, engagement rates, and user demographics. These metrics help you understand the effectiveness of your content, identify popular topics, and make data-driven decisions to improve your blog's reach and impact.
#8. Adjust the content strategy
Depending on the results, you can increase the number of articles, push on topics readers have visited, add or change CTA buttons.
PMS often includes patient communication features, such as secure messaging or patient portals. By incorporating these tools into your blog, you can encourage patient engagement, respond to inquiries, and establish a direct line of communication with your audience.
Repeat steps 5-8 until the desired result is achieved!
When selecting practice management software for your clinic's blog, consider these:
- Specific needs and goals
- The scalability of the software
- Ease of use
- Integration capabilities
- And security features.
By leveraging software, you can optimize your clinic's blog, enhance patient experiences, and drive healthcare content success.
And that’s it! If you are the clinic owner, add our website to your favorites and follow the blog news.