June 2013
By Adela Vintea

tekom Romania: Technical Communication in the field of medical devices

The tekom Country Group Romania held a one-day event on May 16th at the University Politehnica of Bucharest. The session attracted students and professors from Politehnica University of Bucharest and of the Technical University of Civil Engineering of Bucharest as well as specialists from the fields of translation and software documentation.

Voichita Ghenghea, PhD, from the Faculty of Engineering in Foreign Languages and head of the Initiative Committee tekom Romania welcomed participants and introduced the speakers:

  • Hans-Jörg Elsen, Technical Writer and Project Manager Content Management System at Varian Medical Systems Particle Therapy;
  • Răzvan Costache, Managing Director, Avalon Media SRL;
  • Octavian Mihai Ghita, PhD, Associate Professor at Electrical Engineering Faculty of Politehnica University of Bucharest and Researcher and Responsible with scientific communication at SC Elcos Proiect S.R.L.

Hans-Jörg Elsen delivered the first presentation titled “Technical Documentation for Medical Devices”. Generally, Medical Device companies work in a highly regulated industry, which is strongly influenced by strict legislatory and regulatory requirements. The speaker emphasized that user instruction plays an important role as it contributes significantly to the safety of patients and personnel. This presentation offered also a broad insight into the daily work as a Technical Writer in Varian’s Particle Therapy business, including:

  • the structure of the technical documentation team and its role for the company;
  • different legislatory systems and how they influence technical writing;
  • important processes and their relationship to the medical device legislation;
  • common authoring tools and upcoming trends;
  • important personal skills and qualifications.

The second presentation by Răzvan Costache dealt with “Challenges of Medical Devices Translation Projects”. The speaker underlined that translation projects in the medical devices field are not an easy job! Consequently, the resources used for a technical project need to be even more experienced since these medical devices are going to be used by healthcare specialists in an extremely well-regulated field. The final stage, proofreading, needs even more qualified resources.

What will one do when not even the best technical dictionaries or references provide the translation of the source term in the target language? The only solution is to ask the specialists! The speaker talked about the challenges LSPs (Language Service Providers) face when dealing with such projects. From client's requirements and instructions to resources selection, all steps must be taken with utmost care.

The final presentation by Octavian Mihai Ghita was titled “Communication through a wearable grid system for remote monitoring and processing of biosignals”. The speaker focused on monitoring teams that focus on obtaining transmission and process complex information about vital parameters of subjects. Flexible and easy-to-use equipment is required, but instructions must be kept at a basic communication level, because sometimes the operator is not specialized.

Participants greatly enjoyed the networking opportunities, which both encouraged connections between professionals in the field as well as making technical communication more popular in the general public in Romania.  

The Initiative Committee tekom Romania wants to thank all the speakers and participants for their interest in its activities and would be pleased to welcome everybody to future events.