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Ketchum UK’s Inclusion Council returns with another ‘Spotlight Series’, this month featuring Sophie Wain, Medical Writer, who sheds light on her journey into PR and her role at Ketchum.


  1. Describe your role in five words or less

Medical writer; health comms copywriter.

  1. In a sentence, tell us about your career to date

Everything and everywhere – spanning teaching, pharmacovigilance, copywriting, and analytical chemistry before landing in medical communications and PR in 2021!

  1. What energises you most about your role?

As someone who can often be found at the bottom of a Wikipedia hole, I love that my role requires so much deep learning about all manner of cutting-edge treatments and technologies. But what really energises me is taking that scientific data and pulling it through to the real human experiences of people whose lives can be touched by it. This process of taking scientific data and making it human is, to me, what this job – and our medical communications offer, Inspired Science – is all about.

I love being part of Ketchum because there are so many different projects happening here and being able to get a little piece of everyone’s pie is fantastic. There is a really strong commitment to delivering work that is real and human which is incredibly important to me and I love being a part of it.

  1. What skill(s) are you building right now?

I’ve recently picked up a swathe of exciting writing projects for lots of different audiences for different clients, so I’m working on developing the right voice for each one. I’m always keeping my ears pricked and brain churning on new ways to make scientific communications interactive and engaging.

  1. Who or what inspires you?

Since being in this industry, I have been so deeply inspired and energised by the brilliant women I work with – across Inspired Science, Ketchum as a whole, and our clients too. I grew up very ‘meek’ and have been blown away seeing the grounds we can break when we smash the glass ceiling.

One of the most touching moments in my career happened when I was working on a video around goal setting in post-stroke spasticity. A young patient’s stroke recovery goal was to be able to paint her nails again. This simple act really made me realise how much we can achieve when we are properly motivated and supported to do so, and has stayed with me ever since!

  1. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received?

Be the change you wish to see in the world. Appreciate every individual moment, here and now – you never know what will happen next.

  1. What are your top tips for people thinking of a career in med comms?

Having both scientific know-how and creative communication skills is a rare gift. There is an idea that you need to hold an advanced degree to enter medical writing, but this isn’t true; if you can demonstrate creative and analytical thinking, you will be noticed. Once you’re in, there are so many different aspects to learn about: not only the creative translation of science but the commercial landscape, events management, working with budgets, presentation skills, the personalities and needs of your clients… the list goes on! Certainly, this is a career where you’ll be learning continuously for many, many years.

Working in a medical communications team like Inspired Science will elevate you to new heights of critical thinking and creativity, bolstered by people with fantastic experience and an infinite fountain of knowledge for you to learn from. You’ll get to mingle with some mind-blowingly brilliant brains, meeting people involved in life-changing clinical research and practice.

If you’re thinking about getting into medical communications, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with people and ask questions!

  1. What can the sector do to encourage diversity?

I was shocked to learn that 28% of people in PR are privately educated. I think the industry needs to work hard to ensure it’s approachable to people from all backgrounds. The topic of how little you hear regional accents in the workplace came up recently which as a Leicester gal really struck me – I do sometimes feel like I am speaking a different language!

I have to say that I didn’t really know what comms was until I started working in it and although I love it, it wouldn’t have even crossed my mind when I was younger – so more needs to be done to reach young people everywhere whose inputs are vital. This is especially crucial now in an increasingly online world wherein walls that might’ve previously stood are coming down.

  1. What is your favourite work perk?

Ketchum has an industry-leading parental leave package which I feel extremely strongly about after seeing how maternity leave left some friends of mine financially. I am not a parent, nor do I expect to be any time soon, but I stand by Ketchum for supporting those who are and working to bridge the gender pay gap. The culture here overall is incredible and you really do feel that you are part of progress.

  1. When I’m not at my desk you’ll find me…

Working my way through a big pile of fiction books; birdwatching or volunteering for nature; gardening; painting or sculpting; playing video games – or listening to banging electro beats.