Health care is one of the most vital functions in the society and hence the development,
manufacturing & distribution of medicines play an important role in it.
Pharmacy is the art & Science of preparing and dispensing medications and the provision
of drug related information to the public. Pharmacists are educated & trained personnel
in the field who make and dispense drugs and provide valuable drug information as
a member of health care team.
Scientific advances in medicine have been a blessing since all the treatments &
methods for prevention of diseases are now widely available. The daily discovery
of more & more new drugs & drug treatment options have created bigger demands for
Pharmacists, who can eventually work together with Physicians & other healthcare
practitioners on the proper use of new drugs and formulations and have emerged out
to be the global leaders. The new role in slowly emerging out in the Indian scenario
and will open the flood gates of many new opportunities in near future.
India has a vast & growing Pharmaceutical industry and with the implementation of
the WTO proposals on intellectual property rights, Indian companies will have to
increase their focus on, Research & Development of new medicines. Indian companies
have also started exporting bulk drugs & Pharmaceuticals to both developed and developing
On the other hand Indian Population is ever increasing & is still laggard in the
field of health care with basic health care not readily available to all. All these
factors indicate that Indian health care industry has a long way to go and Pharmacists
have to play a vital role in it. In the coming years there will be increasing demand
of qualified Pharmacists in all sectors related to industry & health care like,
research & development, manufacturing pharmacy, marketing management & Hospital
& community pharmacy.
The numerous career opportunities available in Pharmaceutical Sciences are as under;
- Industrial Pharmacy
Working for Pharmaceutical companies can be highly rewarding and professionally
satisfying. Various opportunities for employment in the industry could be as follows.
- Pharmaceutical Marketing
Multinational & indigenous drug companies employ Pharmaceutical graduates for promoting
their products. Success in this career depends upon personality, communication skills;
relationship with Doctors and other health care team members. Many pharmacy graduates
opt for this career path in accordance with their needs and skills.
- Pharmaceutical Manufacturing
B. Pharm. graduates are employed in Pharmaceutical production of tablets/capsules,
liquid orals, ointments and suppositories or in the production of injections and
eye drops. After an apprenticeship period of 18 months they are approved as manufacturing
chemists as per the Drugs and Cosmetics act 1945.
- Quality Assurance/Quality Control
The drugs are required to be safe, effective and of good quality. Quality of the
drug is built in by Current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP). Finished dosage
forms are analyzed according to Pharmacopoeial or other procedures to ensure that
they confirm to established quality standards. This is an upcoming area and large
scale Pharmaceutical industries have separate Quality Assurance Departments which
are responsible for total quality control. This is an interesting and a good opportunity
for pharmacy graduates & post graduates.
- Research & Development
Discovering of new drugs, new dosage forms, new procedures for manufacturing, discovering
new chemical utilities, finding new usage for existing drugs or developing new analytical
methodology are some of the activities, performed by the Research and Development
department. M. Pharm., or PhD’s. are employed for this purpose.
- Hospital & Community Pharmacy
This is the career opportunity for most D. Pharm. and B. Pharm. Graduates
- Hospital Pharmacy
In the hospital environment the pharmacist is involved in providing drugs for out-door
patients and for supply of drugs to in-patients in wards. Interaction with patients,
nurses and doctors is often necessary to give drug related information on its proper
use, dosage, interactions, contra indications and side effects. Economic purchase
of drugs and proper storage is a vital component of a hospital pharmacist's job.
- Retail Pharmacy
Provision of Pharmacy services at retail counters is the professional service of
a pharmacist. The pharmacist is involved in purchasing, storing and proper dispensing
of medicines in the community/retail pharmacy.
- Opportunities in the Government sector
Central and state governments employ pharmacists as drug inspector for licensing
and control of sales premises as well as approval and licensing of manufacturing
premises. Continuous monitoring of sale and manufacturing premises is done by drug
inspectors. Drugs analysts are also employed by the government in various laboratories
to perform analysis of drug samples. There are other various opportunities like
Defence services, Air force, Railways & other organizations where Pharmacists are
With the continuous expansion of Pharmacy education, there is an increasing need
for qualified teachers. The teachers are required for Diploma institutions in Pharmacy
as well as for institutions providing B. Pharm and M. Pharm. courses. B.Pharm with
3 years experience is elligble to be a Asstt. Prof. in a polytechnic/Diploma institutions,
while as M.Pharm is the minimum qualification for the post of Asstt. Prof. in Degree
- Higher Studies Abroad
Increasingly large number of B. Pharm. and M. Pharm. graduates proceed to USA, Canada
and European countries for further education. Many students obtain research/ teaching
assistantship to partially pay for foreign education by passing GRE/TOEFL and other
- Self Employment or Business
Graduates in Pharmacy with entrepreneurial skill can start manufacturing units as
well as testing laboratories. Some pharmacists can become consultants and provide
expertise for setting of new pharmaceutical units and solving of formulation and
- Pharmaceutical Journalism
Pharmacy graduates with excellent communications skills have started magazines,
journals and newspapers providing information about developments in the field of
Pharmacy and medicine.
- Regulatory Authorities
The pharmacists can take up jobs in the regulatory affairs department of various
medium and large scale pharmaceutical industries. Currently this is a new emerging
field with many opportunities.
- Clinical Research
The Pharmacists can be a member of clinical research team in hospitals and other
institutions. There is vast growth in this sector due to the emergence of CRO’s
and MNC’s in our country.
- Opportunities in allied Careers after B. Pharm.
B. Pharm graduates can opt for newer opportunities in allied fields using B. Pharm
as a basic degree.
- B. Pharm + M.Tech/M.Sc. in Biotechnology.
- B. Pharm + MBA in Pharmaceutical marketing or other fields.
- . B.Pharm + LLB/LLM. To enter into new fields of Intellectual Property rights and
eventually Patent attorneys for which there is going to be a great demand in future.