Dear Potential Client,
Thank you for visiting my website.
I understand that you are here, because you are considering entrusting me with the translation of your research paper, medical textbook, your (or your loved one's) medical records or perhaps you are looking for a conference interpreter for the medical event you are organising. Therefore, I believe that it is fair to start by introducing myself briefly to you, as in similar circumstances I would probably like to have the comfort of knowing, who the person to deal with my mission-critical task is.
I have been a translator in the field of Life Sciences since April 2004. My first contact with medical texts (I started with the research paper later published in the American Journal of Psychiatry) was almost forced on me, as at that time I considered translation to be the least creative job ever and I only agreed to help a colleague (a medical consultant) by translating his research paper. I quickly "caught the bug", though, having realised that it was my niche, in which I was able to combine my skills (English language) and passion (medicine), doing some "socially useful" job to help the patients and communicate the advances in medical sciences. Another obvious benefit, which I quickly noticed was that I never stopped learning and there were enough challenges for years to come, as I was not limited to a single medical specialty.
As restless as I am, I have evolved from mere translation, through scientific editing to medical writing. Last 13 years were all about learning for me. You should be aware that the profession of a medical/ clinical research translator/ interpreter in Poland does not exist as such; it is not regulated and there are no uniform qualification frameworks to define the skills necessary for the profession. Only in recent years, there have been some courses organised for translators interested in working with medical texts. The majority of them are, however, pretty superficial and deliver only basic information, not always put in a practical context. Feeling responsible for my own
training, then, I shaped it according to the needs, whilst trying not to stay within the limits set by my current translation/ interpreting assignments. As a part of my training, I have spent hours on self-study based on medical textbooks, have carefully chosen a few university programmes to ensure I acquire necessary skills (academic writing and statistics, for example), and - courtesy of heads of departments in different hospitals across Poland - I have spent weeks job-shadowing consultants in different medical specialties, both in inpatient and outpatient setting (which is unique for a translator/ interpreter in Poland).
In the medical and translation world I am known as a quality-driven professional, striving for perfection, who relentlessly challenges all low-quality translations should they come up in the industry. Quality-wise, I have set the bar (for myself and others - colleagues, mentees...) very high and I have the zero-tolerance policy for any attempt to lower it. It is due to the fact that a patient is my top priority and I understand that the quality of translation (interpreting) I deliver, when working with medical records, clinical trials, research papers, conference presentations or medical textbooks, may significantly affect the life, health and wellbeing of an individual or entire groups of patients. By definition, therefore, I refuse to accept assignments, which are beyond the scope of my current knowledge and professional skills, as it is both safe and fair to do. I believe that the primum non nocere (first, do no harm) principle applies to me, as well.
Since we have already known each other, please accept my invitation to visit my world - on the remaining pages, you will find the record of my key translation and interpreting projects, as well as some information on medical writing and scientific editing services, whereas the "Translator training" page provides an account of the trainings I have delivered as well as those scheduled for the forthcoming months.
Karolina Kalisz, BA, MSc, MBPsS