Careers in Pharmacy: Pharmacy is the art and science of preparing and dispensing drugs and medicines. Pharmacy offers reasonably good career opportunities both by way of jobs as well as in terms of starting your own business. Increasing number of hospitals, nursing homes and pharmaceutical companies all over the country is a clear indication of the growing scope in this area.
Careers in Pharmacy Personal attributes
Interest in research, strong logical and analytical ability, knowledge of new developments in the field, ability to work in group, good communication skill, knowledge of computers are some of the desirable attributes to become a successful pharmacist.
Careers in Pharmacy How to enter?
To enter this field, you are required to go for Diploma in Pharmacy (D. Pharma) or a 4-year Bachelor in Pharmacy (B.Pharm.). Eligibility for D. Pharma/B.Pharma is a pass in 10+2 or equivalent exam physics, chemistry, maths or biology. Admission to B.Pharm is made on the basis of Common with Entrance Test conducted at state level. Further you can opt for M.Pharma or higher studies. At the masters level (M Pharm) specialization is available in various streams. And after M.Pharm candidates can go for Ph.D. programme in some specific areas.
Nature of Work
In order to have an idea about what the study of pharmacy and its application is all about we must know what are the functions of a Pharmacist. A Pharmacist’s job is to prepare, mix, compound or dispense drugs and medicines, ointments, powders, pills, tablets and injections on the prescription of a medical practitioner,
dentist or veterinarian. He also requires to explain the mode and precautions regarding the use of medicines dispensed. In a hospital pharmacy, he might also be required to prepare special formulations, normally not available in the market; to assist the physician in rendering necessary information about various drugs, their contra-indications, incompatibility, etc. He may be required to give intravenous injection, render first aid in emergent cases when no doctor is immediately available. He maintains proper records according to various Government Acts governing the profession of pharmacy.
In a retail Pharmacy (Commercial) he has varied duties, including buying and selling of related items demanded by the public. He may also have an independent work and own a Pharmacy. If he has obtained higher education, he may manufacture medicines and analyse them for purity and strength. As a Drug Inspector or Government Analyst he is to make sure that the drugs of standard quality are manufactured and sold. As a Medical Representative he is to keep medical practitioner informed about the new drugs and treatments. He may take up teaching as a profession or do research in drugs and medicines in a pharmaceutical laboratory.
Manufacturing concerns, research laboratories, hospitals and dispensaries, etc., both in public and private sectors advertise the vacancies in newspapers and conduct interviews. Applications can be made in response to advertisements. Quite often, these vacancies are also notified to Employment Exchanges. Higher posts under State and Central Governments are filled through the respective Public Service Commissions.
Your advancement to senior and better paid posts usually depend on technical qualifications and experience. The pharmacist who has obtained requisite qualifications and experience can take up the position of Chief Hospital Pharmacist. In drug control administration an Inspector is promoted to the post of Analyst. In teaching line the promotion is from lecturer to Assistant Professor and then to Professor.