The American Medical
Writers Association (AMWA) is an educational organization that promotes
excellence in medical communication and recommends principles of conduct for its
members. These principles take into account the important role of medical
communicators in writing, editing, and developing materials in various media and
the potential of the products of their efforts to inform, educate, and influence
audiences. To uphold the dignity and honor of their profession and of AMWA,
medical communicators should accept these ethical principles and engage only in
activities that bring credit to their profession, to AMWA, and to themselves.
1. Medical communicators
should recognize and observe statutes and regulations pertaining to the
materials they write, edit, or otherwise develop.
2. Medical communicators
should apply objectivity, scientific accuracy and rigor, and fair balance while
conveying pertinent information in all media.
3. Medical communicators
should write, edit, or participate in the development of information that meets
the highest professional standards, whether or not such materials come under the
purview of any regulatory agency. They should attempt to prevent the
perpetuation of incorrect information. Medical communicators should accept
assignments only when working in collaboration with a qualified specialist in
the area, or when they are adequately prepared to undertake the assignments by
training, experience, or ongoing study.
4. Medical communicators
should work only under conditions or terms that allow proper application of
their judgment and skills. They should refuse to participate in assignments that
require unethical or questionable practices.
5. Medical communicators
should expand and perfect their professional knowledge and communications
6. Medical communicators
should respect the confidential nature of materials provided to them. They
should not divulge, without permission, any patent, proprietary, patient, or
otherwise confidential information.
7. Medical communicators
should expect and accept fair and reasonable remuneration and acknowledgment for
their services. They should honor the terms of any contract or agreements into
which they enter.
8. Medical communicators
should consider their membership in AMWA an honor and a trust. They should
conduct themselves accordingly in their professional
Eric W. Martin, PhD 1973
First revision: June 1989
revision: June 2008