If you are interested in the world of medicine, but don’t want to take the traditional options of becoming a nurse or a doctor, pharmacy might be the right allied branch. As someone who is interested in becoming a pharmacist, you may have many questions. For instance, what does a pharmacist do? What does it take to become a pharmacist? In this post, we are sharing some of the basic details that are worth knowing.
The role of a pharmacist
Pharmacists are clinical professionals, who work directly and indirectly with doctors, pharmaceutical companies and patients. Their main expertise is with regards to medication usage and interactions. Pharmacists work with doctors and physicians in varied capacities to discuss the potential compatibility aspect of drugs and medications. They are also responsible for managing and handling a pharmacy, related aspects like inventory, and they may guide patients on how to take prescribed medications, or what medications are supposed to do. Note that pharmacists do not prescribe medications, but they may have offer OTC medical solutions to patients, if needed, for minor health concerns.
How much do pharmacists earn?
It depends on many factors, as in any industry, such as experience and expertise. Typically, they get paid on an hourly basis, and their salary may be higher in some states. If you are worried about income, know that pharmacists are always in demand and they earn well.
How to become a pharmacist?
All pharmacists in the US must have a doctorate in pharmacy (PharmD), followed by a period of clinical training. Many students prefer to complete their bachelor’s degree in an allied branch, such as chemistry, organic chemistry, microbiology, following which they take up the graduate coursework. There are many combined courses that allow students to save time, so this could be 6 or 7-year program, which includes a bachelor’s & master’s degree in pharmacy, which must be followed by PharmD. The clinical residency training is a must to get their license, and the time required for that is typically 2 years.
Licensing and more
To practice as a pharmacist, it is important to complete state licensing requirements, which may vary. Clearing the NAPLEX exam is a must. You can check state-wise licensing requirements to know more.
Your career as a pharmacist can be both challenging and engaging at the same time. Plan your career from high school to make the most of opportunities.