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Facilitating Networking and Information Sharing amongst Pharmaceutical and MedComms, Medical Communications, Medical Education and Medical Publishing Specialists

This global initiative facilitates networking and dialogue amongst individuals working in and around the pharmaceutical industry and MedComms, focusing on specialist medical education, medical communications and medical publishing activities.
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    Every Tuesday we send out the MedComms Networking email newsletter to subscribers. It includes brief commentary on what we're doing and planning, and highlights relevant news to encourage sharing of information, experiences and ideas and to stimulate discussion. The text and links included below, by definition, were accurate on the day of publication, but may then become outdated.

    MedComms Networking - 27 August 2019


    Our programme of #MedComms activities in the second half of this year will be dominated by more free Zoom webinars, starting 2 October. I'm currently lining up some great speakers and panellists for you and once again we'll cover a broad range of relevant topics. They'll all be free of charge to attend and, wherever possible, recorded and posted to for future, free, access by anyone, any time. All ideas and volunteers are welcomed.

    I'm particularly keen to talk about different working styles and practices. I have, for instance, pinged an invite to the guys at Synergy Vision to join us and talk about their experiments with the 4 day working week. If you haven't yet heard what they've been up to this year, listen to this recent podcast; The 4 Day Work Week with Ffyona Dawber (36 minutes). It's well worth listening to.

    One area we've more than proven the value of Zoom webinars in, has been supporting the freelancers who subscribe to our MedComms Workbook service. By definition, they're spread across the globe but using Zoom we've enabled some really useful discussions. Last week I grabbed the opportunity to set up another such Zoom meeting for them on 23 September to meet with representatives of IPSE, the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed in the UK.

    It might be an interesting year ahead in the UK for freelancers and contractors - and for the companies that commission them - as the UK government cracks down on the so-called IR35 tax rules. We've increasingly heard of companies requiring MedComms freelancers to have Limited Company status, or to be registered for VAT, or to have professional indemnity and so on. Sometimes there's no apparent sense behind what's required for the work that's actually needed. But it reflects a general tightening up of working practices.

    I'd be very keen to hear from anyone who regularly commissions MedComms freelancers and can join us to discuss the practical implications of some of what's happening.

    It might prove a real challenge for some. This article appeared in the Financial Times (FT) over the weekend; HMRC targets GSK contractors in UK tax crackdown (it's paywalled but the FT plays games with non-subscribers and you should be able to access it at least once to read it). The article states, "UK pharma group GlaxoSmithKline has found itself at the centre of a tax crackdown after authorities accused nearly 1,500 of its self-employed contractors of being "disguised employees". HM Revenue & Customs sent identical letters last week to contractors working in various GSK departments including IT and biomedical sciences..."

    Meanwhile, don't forget our next annual careers event in Manchester is on 10 September. Please do spread the word and encourage anyone who wants to learn more about MedComms to sign up. The more the merrier.

    Remember, details of all our activities are kept bang up-to-date at or give me a shout at any time if you've any questions, comments or suggestions.


    Peter Llewellyn
    Managing Director, NetworkPharma Ltd
    Follow me on Twitter @NetworkPharma
    Join 4,000 international colleagues in the MedComms Networking Linkedin Group
    The information at is always bang up-to-date!


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