If you want to join the healthcare industry but don’t want to go for a traditional career as a nurse or a doctor, pharmacy may come off as a nice alternative. Pharmacists are high in demand, and in the US, the average salaries are pretty decent. As of 2017, pharmacists made a salary of more than $120,000 on an average. You can check online to find the best college of pharmacy to know more on the course, but before that, here is a close look at the options that you can explore as a pharmacist.
1. Work as a community pharmacist. The traditional role of a pharmacist is to dispense prescription medications to patients and offer all the necessary information for safe use. From explaining side effects and discussing drug interactions, pharmacists are responsible for providing genuine information. Pharmacists also work with doctors and nurses to offer necessary details, when required.
2. Working at a hospital. You can choose to work for hospitals offering pharmaceutical care for patients. Hospital pharmacists help patients in receiving appropriate medicines as per prescription and in the right dose. They also work with other healthcare professionals to advice on drug therapy and related aspects when required. Many hospital pharmacists also help in preparing solutions and IVs.
3. Work in research & development. Pharmacists with a doctorate degree can work in the field of R&D extensively, for clinical trials, research and quality control. They can also work with companies directly to ensure compliance and can have a role to play in marketing campaigns and sales. Many governmental organizations actually accept professionals for different roles with a pharmacy degree, such as FDA.
Finding a pharmacy school
The first obvious step towards becoming a pharmacist is to find the right school, and while there are many names, you need to select one that’s reputed and would add volume to your resume. To take up a doctorate course, you must have a bachelor’s degree in science, with subjects like organic chemistry. Colleges often require students to take up the Pharmacy College Admissions Test, and you must complete the PharmD degree. Following this, you need to complete two exams and get your results, to obtain your license to work as a pharmacist.
As you may have guessed, your career as a pharmacist can be rewarding and challenging at the same time, and we recommend that you do your homework before selecting a school.