Careers in Pharmacy

If a career in the healthcare industry interests you, then pursuing a degree in pharmacy may be an option. Pharmacy is the process of preparing and dispensing medicines and drugs to patients. An expert in the field of pharmacy distributes medication based on a patient’s prescription from a healthcare professional such as a doctor. Pharmacists can also help patients select the right medication for their health concerns.

There are a wide range of career choices available to pharmacy professionals. They can work in roles such as community or hospital pharmacist. They can conduct academic research and can also find employment as pharmaceutical researchers or pharmacist consultants. Careers in pharmacy can include job titles such as managed care pharmacist. Pharmacists can work at:

  • Clinics
  • Hospitals
  • Drug stores
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Mental health institutions
  • Nursing homes
  • Federal agencies

Pharmacists have the option of specializing in a particular field related to health. Infectious disease, oncology, poison control and psychiatric pharmacy are just some of the areas of expertise that pharmacists may choose. Depending on the level of education and experience, a pharmacist can earn between 82,000 to 117,000 US dollars on average.

Pharmacy Degrees and Programs
In order to work as a pharmacist it is essential to acquire the right education through an academic program related to pharmacy. Pharmacy aides, technicians and pharmacists are all required to have a degree in pharmacy. Pharmacy aides usually work in administrative functions while pharmacy technicians can assist pharmacists in preparing prescriptions. These careers in pharmacy, while not requiring much pharmacy related education can only provide limited success.
In order to make a successful career in the field of pharmacy it is important to acquire at least an undergraduate degree in the field so as to gain a more comprehensive knowledge of the subject. Some degrees in pharmacy at the undergraduate level include:

  • Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm)
  • Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy

If you wish to become a practicing pharmacist, it is a requirement to complete a graduate degree in pharmacy. Such a program results in a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree. Most pharmacy related degrees require that students complete an internship at a pharmacy.

Pharmacists in order to practice need to be licensed. This is a requirement of all states. Pharmacists can take the North American Pharmacist Licensure Exam upon completion of the PharmD degree. Pharmacists may be additionally required to also pass the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam in some states.

Areas of Study in Pharmacy
Pharmacists have a number of responsibilities assigned to them. They are required to fill prescriptions and dispense medicines accordingly. They also advise patients on the usage of medication and provide feedback to doctors and pharmaceutical companies. During the course of a program in pharmacy, students learn about the field extensively. Subjects such as statistics, chemistry, anatomy and physiology are taught. Biostatistics, bio-pharmaceutics and pathology are also part of the curriculum of a pharmacy program. Other subjects taught include drug interactions, diagnosis of diseases and pharmacy practice experiences.

Other Useful Resources

Frequently Asked Question(s)

Q:Searching for pharmacy tech schools in Houston mentioned distance learning programs. What are the benefits associated with this education?

A:There would be a mention of distance learning programs when searching for pharmacy tech schools in Houston. Online education is specifically designed to help students study at their convenience and pace. These programs are comprehensively designed so that every topic is discussed in detail. With the help of these programs students can also save money on travel and accommodation. Students interested in online education are advised to search our website for an extensive list of online institutions.

Q:In careers in pharmacy, what will be the median income?

A:Pharmacists are professionals who dispense medicines and rugs to patients and doctors. These play a key role in the healthcare industry and are in high demand. You must have relevant education and training to become a pharmacist. The median income for these professionals has been estimated to be $111,570 according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Q:For a well-paying career in pharmacy, do I need a post graduate qualification?

A:Yes, most pharmacy careers require a PharmD qualification. This is the highest level of education one can achieve in the field of pharmacy. You first need to complete your high school education, and a bachelor degree in the same or a similar field. Many popular schools are offering PharmD programs.

Q:Where can a pharmacy technician work?

A:A pharmacy technician is someone who helps pharmacists dispense prescription medications. As such, the most common places where pharmacy technicians were found working in 2012 include pharmacies and drug stores (53%), hospitals (17%), general merchandise stores (12%), grocery stores (7%), and in ambulatory health care services (3%). (Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

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