Medical Translation (in English)

1) Become a proficient biomedical translator through the life cycle of a new drug – Part I and II

Course summary

Instructor: Luciana Ramos

Bio: Luciana Ramos is an ATA-certified professional translator, with almost 25 years of experience, and special focus on medical translations and software localization. Her professional background as a translator encompasses different roles in the language and technology industry —terminologist, translator, editor, language lead, translators’ trainer— for international organizations, direct clients and LSP. She has obtained her Master degree on Medical Translation at Universidad Jaume I, Castellon, Spain. As a former company owner, she developed TEP QA processes and procedures for ISO-certification; lectured worldwide on vendor management, machine translation, tools and QA; and gained a different perspective of clients’ actual needs. Currently, she runs her own business devoted to professional training, consulting and translating/interpreting.


Availability: Get access to two on-demand training sessions at a special price:$ 50

(Duration 2 hours – $ 25/hour)

Language: English



Learning about the process that a drug has to go through till it can reach market is a complex web that the translator needs to know to address the translation task successfully. It takes on average 12 years and over US$350 million to get a new drug from the laboratory onto the pharmacy shelf. Once a company develops a drug, it undergoes around three and a half years of laboratory testing, before an application is made to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to begin testing the drug in humans. Only one in 1000 of the compounds that enter laboratory testing will ever make it to human testing.

If the FDA gives the green light, the “investigative” drug will then enter three phases of clinical trials. The company then submits an application (usually about 100,000 pages) to the FDA for approval, a process that can take up to two and a half years. After final approval, the drug becomes available for physicians to prescribe. At this stage, the drug company will continue to report cases of adverse reactions and other clinical data to the FDA.

Understanding this cycle is vital for medical translators and, once digested, it can become an endless source of reference, reliable sources of information and terminology, and a valuable self-catering training tool.



Training plan:

  • Background refresh from part I
  • Clinical studies (cont.)
  • New drug application review
  • Samples
  • Resources
  • Conclusions



2) The legal framework of medical translations as a training tool

3) Medical translation – terminological approach for translators’ specialization

4) From the bottom of your heart – concepts and terminology relating to the heart and circulatory and respiratory systems

5) Medical emergencies – translator on call

6) Difficulties found when translating texts for the U.S. healthcare system

7) Medical Translation – Multiple translation content and formats

8) Medical Translation – Healthcare and Health insurance

9) The social aspect of healthcare – Language difficulties related to disease prevention and education

Clinical Protocols – Guided practice for medical translation from English into Spanish, parts I and II

10) Informed consents – translation and revision practice

11) Medical translation – terminology-based approach to become a specialized translator