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Things You Should Know About a Career in Pharmacy

by Uneeb Khan
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pharmacy career

Pharmacists are medicinal experts who understand the effect of various drugs on the human body. According to WHO, approximately 2.6 million people have a pharmacy career. 

Things you need to understand before choosing to become a pharmacist

First, you need to decide what type of pharmacist you will become. There are four kinds of pharmacists:

  • Health Care Practitioners: these people work in hospitals or other health care facilities. They need to understand the effects of different brands of medicines. Before prescribing medications, they must justify using these medicines on the patient.
  • Salespeople: These people work in shops. Or they represent a brand and are responsible for marketing. 
  • Researchers: These pharmacists work in the research and development sector, usually for brands and occasionally for governments. It is somewhat similar to the chemist career.
  • Teachers: Every profession needs a teacher. These people prepare a new generation of pharmacists.

Types of Pharmacy courses in India:

  1. Diploma: The minimum qualification is 10+2. Your subjects must be physics, chemistry, and biology. The candidates must be at least 17 years old.
  2. B Pharm: For a bachelor’s in pharmacy, you need to complete 10+2. You must have 50% marks in class 12 with physics, chemistry, and biology as your subjects. 
  3. M Pharm: You need to have a degree in B Pharma for admission into M Pharma. It is a two years course.
  4. Ph.D.: You can get admission to Ph.D. after completing your M Pharma. It is a research degree.                

Specializations in Pharmacy Courses

Mentioned below are specializations in Pharmacy Courses. You can opt for these during an M Pharm. The specializations chosen in M Pharm may influence the topic of your Ph.D. dissertation. Some M Pharm specializations are:

  1. Pharmaceutical Chemistry
  2. Pharmaceutical Technology
  3. Pharmaceutical Analysis and Quality Assurance 
  4. Clinical Pharmacy
  5. Pharmaceutics 
  6. Pharmacy Practice
  7. Pharmacognosy
  8. Pharmacology
  9. Pharmaceutical Marketing Management
  10. Quality Assurance
  11. Phytopharmaceuticals and Natural Products
  12. Drug Discovery and Development
  13. Medicinal Chemistry
  14. Bulk Drugs
  15. Drug Regulatory Affairs
  16. Biopharmaceutics
  17. Industrial Pharmacy

Admission Procedure

Colleges have their entrance exams for B Pharm admissions. For M Pharm admissions, you need to qualify Graduate Pharmacy Aptitude Test (GPAT). In Telangana, you need to clear TS Polycet for D Pharm admissions. 

Other state level exams include:

  1. TS EAMCET
  2. AP EAMCET
  3. AP PGECET
  4. MH CHT
  5. KCET
  6. UKSEE 
  7. Delhi CET
  8. BITSAT
  9. WBJEE

Several private colleges provide pharmaceutical degrees. Ensure that these colleges have approval by AICTE and the Pharmacy Council of India (PCI), New Delhi.

Some of the jobs you can get after completing your pharmacy courses are:

  1. Consultant Pharmacist
  2. Clinical Pharmacist
  3. Dispensary Manager
  4. Dispensary Pharmacist
  5. Community Pharmacist
  6. Hospital Pharmacist
  7. Medicines Safety Manager 
  8. Medicines Management Technicians
  9. Pharmacy Assistant
  10. Senior Clinical Pharmacists

How much do Pharmacists earn?

The salary in the pharmacy career depends on the candidate’s qualification, location, and experience. In India, the starting salary is INR 15,000 to INR 25,000. It increases with expertise. A pharmacist’s average salary in India is around Rs, 11 Lakhs per annum.  

What do pharmacists do?

As a pharmacist, you need to manage the workflow from filling out a prescription to conducting medication consultations. They are responsible for verifying prescriptions. If the pharmacy needs new medical equipment, a pharmacist takes care of it. If you need to know about your medications, a pharmacist can help you.

Most pharmacists have shift duty. They may work in eight five-hour shifts or four ten-hour shifts. If the pharmacy is a retail store, you only need to go for day shifts. In a hospital pharmacy, you may have nightshifts as well. 

Patient interactions are the central part of being a pharmacist. You need to ensure that everyone gets the proper medication and that the patients understand them. Your other responsibility is to tell a patient the name, usage, dosage, and validity period of the medicines. 

A pharmacist’s most important responsibility is to be attentive to detail for timely patient care. Every medication you give must be proper with the correct dosage. Error isn’t a choice in the career of a pharmacist.

In conclusion, to be a pharmacist, you need to study for many years. A pharmacist can work as a caregiver, salesman, researcher, or teacher. The job of a pharmacist includes managing the workflow in a pharmacy and clearing the patients’ doubts. Attention to detail is the primary quality a pharmacist must-have. A pharmacy career may be stressful, but it is rewarding as well.  

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