Careers in Pharmacy

The demand for trained pharmacy professionals has dramatically increased in recent years due to the rapid growth of the health care and pharmaceutical industries, as well as the needs of a growing elderly population. The number of pharmacists in health care services is also increasing as pharmacists become more actively involved in drug therapy decision-making for patients of all ages.

What do Pharmacists do?

Pharmacists help patients get well! While the role of the pharmacist changes according to practice setting, in general, pharmacists today take an active role in talking with patients about their medications, monitoring drug therapy, and providing collaborative consultation to physicians and other health care professionals. Pharmacists are the drug experts! They provide expertise about the composition of drugs, including their chemical, biological, and physical properties and their manufacture and use. They ensure drug purity and strength and make sure that drugs do not interact in a harmful way.

Today, many community pharmacists are taking a greater role in not only treating illnesses but in preventing them. Pharmacists vaccinate patients against influenza and pneumonia and many are involved in disease management programs for patients with diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Pharmacists also are involved in smoking cessation programs and screening programs such as those to detect osteoporosis and high cholesterol. Pharmacists also are helping patients take a more active role in their health through educational programs and individual counseling sessions.

Is Pharmacy the Right Career Choice for You? Consider

  • A well-rounded career. Pharmacy is an exciting blend of science, health care, direct patient contact, computer technology, and business.
  • A vital part of the health care system. Pharmacists play a vital role in improving patient care through the medicine and information they provide.
  • Excellent earning potential. Pharmacy is one of the most financially rewarding careers.
  • Outstanding opportunities. There is an unprecedented demand for pharmacists in a wide variety of occupational settings.
  • A trusted profession. Pharmacists are consistently ranked as one of the most highly trusted professionals because of the care and service they provide.

For more information about the variety of careers available in pharmacy, please visit the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy and the American Pharmacists Association.

page last modified: June 14 2012     

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