Did you know that there are over 100 pharmacist-related career paths?
Pharmacy is a well-recognized branch of biology globally with multiple careers and job options. You may choose to be a hospital pharmacist, research assistant, military pharmacist, community pharmacist, or any other, depending on your interest domain. Pharmacists work with other healthcare workers to ensure quality patient care. They not only serve in hospitals, clinics, or the military but also research and produce better treatment options.
Here’s a brief introduction to various pharmacist career paths in the pharma industry. Have a look and see what interests you the most.
The need for hospital pharmacists was not realized by the management and doctors a few decades back. Physicians were believed to be enough to diagnose ailments and prescribe and dispense medication. However, with the passing of time, hospital pharmacists have become essential. They make sure that every drug administered to the patient follows protocols of rational drug use.
You may also make interventions where needed. Pharmacists are also a part of purchasing, and managing inventory, compounding medicines, and testing drugs in the hospital. Being a hospital pharmacist is a good choice if you want to interact with patients and contribute to their well-being directly. It enables you to utilize your knowledge and provide immediate, adequate treatment.
Hospital Pharmacist Average Salary: $144,000
The role of a community pharmacist is not as direct as a hospital pharmacist. Alternative to hospital pharmacists, community pharmacists may interact with the customer instead of the consumer. However, being a community pharmacist is perfect for learning and serving your local community. Community pharmacists are also known as retail pharmacists.
A community pharmacist must have impeccable technical knowledge and communication skills. They should be well-versed with the dose, frequency, routes of administration, side effects, etc., of every medicine they work with. As a community pharmacist, it will be your responsibility to counsel the consumer and customer about the medicine intake.
Community Pharmacist Average Salary: $114,504
Many firms recruit pharmacists to conduct clinical trials of newly launched drugs and vaccines. The pharmacists collect data about the volunteers and record the outcomes. They monitor the safe storage and administration of the drugs and minimize adverse effects (if any). Pharmacists overlook clinical trials to ensure patient safety and protocol compliance. They also counsel the participants and explain the procedures to the hospital staff for their support.
Clinical Trials Pharmacist Average Salary: $103,044
Whether you belong to the US or any other part of the world, you can apply for a pharmacist position in the military. The air force, navy, and army have specialized pharmacists that cater to the medical needs of the soldiers. You will be deployed to different locations to utilize your expertise for those who protect the borders. It is an excellent choice if you have always wanted to be a part of the military yet choose to be a pharmacist.
Military Pharmacist Average Salary: $63,695
Besides hospitals and the community, pharmacists are the backbone of the drug manufacturing industry. They are involved in research, planning, production, quality assurance, and many other roles including development in a drug production plant. Production pharmacists are an important part of the drug manufacturing chain. They do not operate the machinery themselves; yet supervise the workers. Production pharmacists must be vigilant as the tiniest miscalculation or wrong processing can ruin the whole batch. You may also look for quality management roles at a pharmaceutical plant.
Production Pharmacist Average Salary: $61,606
Research and Development
It won’t be an exaggeration to say that pharmaceutical studies would not have existed if research and development were not there. Research and development is a crucial component of the pharma industry that works to introduce better drug therapy for patients. Pharmacists in R&D do not only work on inducting new molecules to them for treating pathological conditions, but they also find ways to offer improvement. Companies spend millions on research and look for pharmacists best suited for the job. You can be a part of a research facility if that interests you.
Research and Development Pharmacist Salary: $144,814
Regulatory affairs are among the most demanded pharmacist career paths in the pharma industry as it pays pretty well. As the name suggests, pharmacists in this domain regulate the safety and efficacy of the drug. They direct the product quality in the pharmaceutical company for the drug safety department, such as the FDA to approve the medicine.
They monitor each step of the process, from the discovery of the molecule to the pricing as well as post-marketing protocols. Regulatory affairs include lots of research work and in-depth knowledge about the therapeutic and physical attributes of a drug. Regulatory pharmacists are critical for pharmaceutical industries to launch new products.
Regulatory Pharmacist Average Salary: $102,564
As a pharmacist, you must have heard “pharmacovigilance,” but what is it?
Many people confuse pharmacovigilance and regulation. However, they do not perform the same function. Professionals in the pharmacovigilance department act as drug safety officers to discover, evaluate or prevent drug-related issues. They are responsible for monitoring the drug’s safety profile from the phases of induction and manufacturing to post-marketing. They report the adverse effects to the regulatory body, which may recall a specific batch with several complainants.
Pharmacovigilance Pharmacist Average Salary: $71,116
Nutrition-related products have existed for a long time. Yet, nutraceutical has gained a significant place in the pharmaceutical market now. Many pharma industries are creating products of natural origin to produce supplements along with other foods like granola bars and cereals with added nutrition. You can be a part of the nutraceutical department in the pharma industry and contribute to nutritional products for the consumers.
Nutraceutical Production Pharmacist Average Salary: $79,243
Long-term care facilities like nursing homes and retirement facilities usually have a staff for the medical needs of the residents. Usually, pharmacists are also a part of the team other than CNAs or PCTs. They work with other healthcare providers to manage medication and appropriate dosing. Some elderly residents suffer from chronic diseases and require close monitoring. Pharmacists play a major role in ensuring the best treatment in such facilities.
Long-Term Care Pharmacist Average Salary: $114,629
Did you know that veterinary clinics and hospitals also recruit pharmacists? Yes, they do!
Pharmacists in veterinary services compound medications according to the needs of the pets. The medication has to be prepared vigilantly according to the pet’s condition and weight. And who can do it better than a pharmacist!
But, being a veterinary pharmacist requires further education and training in veterinary pharmacology and therapeutics.
Veterinary Pharmacist Average Salary: $122,189
Often fresh Pharmacy graduates do not know that they can also try their luck in marketing. Typically, it is considered a field for business students. However, the knowledge of pharmacy enables you to market your product better. Pharmaceutical companies welcome pharmacy-degree holders into their marketing departments. They understand the protocols of pharmaceutical marketing and comply with the regulatory instructions.
Marketing professionals in the pharma industries collaborate with pharmacovigilance and regulatory teams to provide accurate information to doctors and patients. They plan conferences and seminars to educate physicians and prescribers about the medicine. They also conduct marketing analysis pre and post-launch of the product with the help of test marketing and other strategies.
Marketing Average Salary in Pharma Industry: $56,375
Sales in pharmaceutical companies work traditionally. The pharmacist’s sales approach is to educate the doctors through visual material. They connect the company to potential customers and provide samples at hospitals, pharmacies, and clinics. While their main motive is to amp up the sale, they ensure giving the right information regarding patient care, including therapeutics and side effects.
Sales Rep Average Salary in Pharma Industry: $94,840
The concept of locum pharmacists as a pharmacist career path in the pharma industry is not much popular. But, we’ll tell you what many others don’t know!
Locum pharmacists are described as temporary or freelance pharmacists registered with their country’s pharmacy society. They are often asked for their service when regular pharmaceutical staff goes on leave, such as vacation, sick leave, maternity leave, etc. It is a suitable choice if you are an adventurous soul with a pharmacist degree who would love traveling. You might have to go to different locations where pharmacists are required.
Locum Pharmacist Average Salary: $172,489
It is often not suitable for many graduates to opt for extended hours in the pharma industry or night shifts in a hospital. If you love learning and teaching, you can obtain further education and make your way to being an educationist in your domain of interest. Often colleges and universities recruit alumni, which is always worth a shot!
Pharmacology Professor Average Salary: $94,485
The Bottom Line
Being a pharmacist is great as it comes with endless options to choose from. You may join a hospital, retirement facility, pharma industry, retail pharmacy, or university to put your skills to use. Hospitals and industries welcome pharmacists in multiple roles like compounding, dispensing, production, research, pharmacovigilance, marketing, sales, etc. You may also opt for a veterinary pharmacy to compound and administer medication for the pets.
From so many pharmacist career paths in the pharma industry, choose the one that interests you.