No, all freelancers are not created equal. While Freelancer Fox is a genius at coding and building website content, Freelancer Owl is more medical savvy as a health writer. So how do you know who you are hiring when dealing with the freelance world? After all, you can’t check their corporate office for the 411 on your new writer. Freelancers are free of all that jazz. When you want to hire someone in the health industry, though, you must find someone worth their cupcakes. The last thing you need is a quack writer selling laced lollipops to your readers.
Get Thee a Certification
One way you can verify the background and knowledge of a writer in the health niche is to check their credentials. A medical writer willing to get certified by the American Medical Writers Association is golden. This certification isn’t one of those pay-for-a-piece-of-paper deals you find online.
- To be certified by the AMWA you have to have a bachelor’s degree in your field of study, along with 2 years of full-time working experience within the past 5 years.
Also, once you take the exam, in person at a AMWA or Drug Information Association (DIA) conference, you have to get recertified every 5 years by attending lectures, taking college courses, publishing material, or maintaining professional membership with the AMWA. In other words, this is some serious certification. For anyone hiring a medical writer worth their healthy verbiage, ask to see if they have this in their repertoire.
Health Information Provider Check-Up
For writers focused on health information management, healthcare data privacy, coding, or health data analysis, there’s a certification for that, too. The American Health Information Management Association offers a certification program for industry professionals. Here is a list of the specific areas of certification:
- Registered health information administrator
- Registered health information technician
- Certified coding associate
- Certified coding specialist and/or physician-based
- Certified documentation improvement practitioner
- Certified health data analyst
- Certified in healthcare privacy and security
- Certified healthcare technology specialist
When hiring freelance writers to handle patient data or privacy concerns, you must ensure you have someone qualified and well versed in security issues. Getting this certification from the AHIMA requires freelancers to have the educational background associated with their accreditation. As a SMB hiring freelancers for your health care content, you cannot afford to hire anyone without professional level training on their side.
Dealing with online certifications can be iffy. Always check into the credentials of any healthcare writer you hire freelance. Your readers cannot be confused with inaccurate or dangerous data that might jeopardize their health or safety. Steer clear of such snafus by hiring writers with the right credentials.
Miranda B uses the web frequently, while keeping a keen eye out for those pieces of content that cheapen the ‘net with their falsehoods and sales pitches.