Skrivanek will be at CTIP – Clinical Trials Innovation Programme, Hamburg June 27th-28th 2016

11 05 2016

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Skrivanek’s newly appointed Global Sales Manager Jaroslava Ouzka will be representing the company at 5th CTIP event in Hamburg towards the end of June. Jaroslava has been with Skrivanek over 10 years and  has extensive experience of all aspects of the translation business. Most recently she has headed Skrivanek’s  division providing language services to major European institutions such as the EU and European Parliament.

“The CTIP meetings are always an excellent opportunity to hear about new innovations and trends, exchange experiences and of course network with a range of professionals from around the world” “I’m really looking forward to a busy two days” said Jaroslava.

“Skrivanek has a division exclusively dedicated to Life Sciences and Medical translations with experts delivering top quality translations across the sector from packaging and product information through clinical trials and research findings to medical device manuals and marketing materials. We are proud to count companies such as Abbott, GE Healthcare, Siemens, Worldwide Clinical Trials and many others among our clients. We deliver high quality Life Sciences translations that allow clients to successfully communicate and compete in global markets. Our Life Sciences translators are among the best specialist linguists in their chosen field, and they are guided at all times by Skrivanek’s stringent quality assurance and best practice policies to ensure that all statutory, legal and moral obligations are met.”

So, as a leading supplier of translation services to clinical trials organizations worldwide Skrivanek regards the CTIP as a “don’t miss” event and although Hamburg is still some weeks away we would like to invite other attendees who would like the opportunity to meet Jaroslava and discuss how they might benefit from Skrivanek’s expertise to contact us as soon as possible to arrange an informal meeting. As we all know from experience schedules fill up quickly and time flies at such events!


If you would like to contact Jaroslava prior to the event:

Phone: +420 605 235 691



See you in  Hamburg!

J. Atkinson



Back Translation: the Key to Absolute Accuracy in Medical Translation?

22 07 2014

The root meaning of “translation”, deriving from the Latin translatio, is approximately “to carry across”. Significantly, the word does not imply equivalency, but rather an effort to take something into a new realm, results uncertain. When a translator “carries” a text from one language to another, errors are possible. Even without errors, semantic variations are common – one linguist’s translation is unlikely to ever be identical to another’s. This is why translation is often considered an “art,” and its practitioners are essentially artists with different perspectives, levels of understanding, and linguistic skills.

Medical Translation

But when the accuracy of medical or pharmaceutical documents explaining drugs, instruments, or specialized processes is vulnerable to human errors, people start wanting to structure translation into a science of absolutes. Because errors or unclear explanations can be life threatening in some fields, especially medical translation, “back translation” is sometimes used as an extra step in the quality assurance (QA) process. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) provides a detailed protocol for the process on its website:

WHO’s recommendation requires several analyses by multiple experts, an effort to pin language down in as precise and scientific a manner as possible. Most back translation is simpler. A forward translation from English to Spanish, for example, is back-translated by a translator unaware of the original, and this new English version is compared to the original to see what did and didn’t come out “equal.” “Reconciliation” then smoothes choices into a final draft of the original.

Theoretically, back translation gives valuable feedback to those on the source language end who need to know what their translation is saying to its foreign audience. It’s a controversial QA choice in that it requires a lot of resources, and some professionals question whether it’s truly more effective than standard editing and proofreading. A common complaint by these professionals is that in the end, back translation adds to the number of people involved, and thus increases the diversity of language interpretations and ideas about expression that have to be integrated. But it may be precisely in that point that the benefit exists: more analysis, more discussion, and more winnowing away of language differences, ideally produce something like an inarguable common denominator.

For most situations, highly experienced translators provide the level of linguistic and cultural accuracy required, without back translation, and because of the extra cost and time involved, global translation companies like Skrivanek find that the process is generally only ordered by medical companies. But for translations in which the slightest shade of misinterpretation could cost lives, back translation provides assurance that every conceivable tool has been used to ensure accuracy.

 J. McShulskis