Pharmacists are healthcare professionals responsible for supplying medicines in the most economical and effective way possible, it is an applied medical science. Pharmacists monitor the quality, safety and the use of medicines, requiring a high level of involvement and interaction with patients. They also need to have a strong knowledge of legislation and professional codes of practice.
Pharmacists work in a variety of settings providing advice on medicines. Their day-to-day work depends on the area in which they work.
Typical duties include:
* Dispensing medications as prescribed by doctors and other medical professionals
* Reviewing prescriptions to ensure accuracy and to evaluate their suitability for the patient
* Providing information and advice about drugs, their side effects, correct dosage and proper storage
* Providing other health advice, such as guidance on stopping smoking
* Keeping records such as pharmacy files, patient profiles, charge system files, inventories, and registries of poisons, narcotics or controlled drugs
* Planning, implementing and maintaining procedures for mixing, packaging and labelling pharmaceuticals to ensure they meet legal requirements
* Assessing the identity, strength or purity of medications
* Working with other healthcare professionals to plan, monitor, review, or evaluate the quality or effectiveness of drugs
* Ordering and purchasing pharmaceutical supplies, medical supplies, or drugs.
* Maintaining stock and storing and handling it properly
* Analysing prescribing trends to monitor patient compliance and to prevent excessive usage or harmful interactions
* Advising patients on medication brands, medical equipment or healthcare supplies.
The focus of the role will differ depending on the type of organization you work for. For example:
Hospital pharmacists are responsible for quality testing, storing and security of drugs and medicines in hospitals. They also advise doctors and patients on suitable medication and some hospital pharmacists can issue prescriptions.
Retail or community pharmacists supply prescribed and over-the-counter medicines to the general public in retail pharmacies and GPs’ practices. They also give advice to customers on using medicines safely and about possible side effects. Community pharmacists also monitor patients’ long-term conditions and provide advice on keeping well – for example, they may offer guidance and support on giving up smoking.
Industrial pharmacists work for pharmaceutical companies where they design, develop and test new medications. They’re also involved in marketing drugs.
– Bachelor’s degree in pharmacy or pharmacology.
– Proven experience as a pharmacist.
– Valid license to practice as a pharmacist.
– Detailed understanding and knowledge of dosage requirements and administration, chemical compounds, and pharmaceutical brands.
– Great organizational skills.
– Excellent verbal and written communication skills.