Do you look at your pharmacist and wonder what their job entails? Pharmacists are an integral part of our healthcare system. But what does a pharmacist do?
In hospitals and other medical settings, there are approximately 42,500 licensed pharmacists. A pharmacist can provide various services depending on their environment. Their education is ongoing as the pharmaceutical industry continues to develop and expand.
Do you want to learn more about pharmacist responsibilities? Can pharmacists help their patients save money? Here is everything you need to know about what a pharmacist does.
What Is a Pharmacist?
A pharmacist is a healthcare expert that provides a range of medical services to the public. Their main jobs are dispensing effective medicines and filling prescriptions for their patients. A pharmacist can also provide guidance and information on how to use medications.
Pharmacists specialize in the storage and use of various medicines. They take part in the research and development of new drugs in the pharmaceutical industry. A pharmacist is a highly qualified individual who has a passion for helping others.
What Does a Pharmacist Do?
A pharmacist dispenses prescriptions issued by doctors and other medical professionals. They are experts in medicine and can provide valuable health advice to patients. A pharmacist can provide guidance on how to take medications.
They can also answer patients’ questions and provide reassurance. Some of the pharmacist’s responsibilities include:
- Ensuring accuracy and safety of medications
- Checking legal compliance within the pharmacy
- Providing immunizations to patients
- Measuring and preparing prescriptions
- Providing patient consultations
- Carrying out health screenings and checks
Pharmacists are also in charge of the quality and storage of medicines. They focus on the safe and effective management of drugs in their facilities. This knowledge is vital to ensure that all medicines meet the correct standards for the patient.
Pharmacists also play an important role in saving patients money. They can help their patients by exploring alternatives to expensive medications. There are various pharmacies price comparison sites available to find affordable alternatives.
A pharmacist will be able to provide information to patients about patient assistance programs if they are on a low income. Pharmacists can also search for medication coupons that could save patients hundreds of dollars.
Education and Training
To begin your pharmacist career, you must earn your Doctor of Pharmacy degree (Pharm.D.). Pharmacists must earn their bachelor’s degree before they complete their Pharm.D. qualification. Most students will complete a degree in science such as biology or chemistry.
The institution you get your Pharm.D. from should be accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE). The program is four years long. It provides adequate training for professionals wishing to enter the profession.
Next, a student needs to pass the Pharmacist Licensure Exam. They must complete 1500 hours of training to pass the exam. Pharmacists can choose to complete further training in their field of expertise.
They can also participate in a residency program to gain more experience. A pharmacist may be required to complete state-specific exams to practice. They may also need to pass a vaccine-specific licensure exam if they want to provide vaccinations.
Types of Pharmacist Careers
Pharmacists work in a variety of medical environments. They tend to work in patient-centered settings such as hospitals, clinics, and drug stores. Here are some of the different pharmacy jobs that you may come across.
A community pharmacist is the most familiar type of pharmacist. They guide patients on how to take their prescriptions and offer patient consultations. They are also responsible for providing information and advice to improve patient health.
They supervise the other pharmacy staff and ensure that everything runs smoothly for their patients. These types of pharmacists work in community settings such as doctor’s clinics or health centers.
Many pharmacists choose to qualify as specialty pharmacists to help treat severe medical conditions. Specialty drugs can require special storage, monitoring, and administration. They can also have a higher risk of side effects in comparison to other drugs.
Home Care Pharmacist
A home care pharmacist can provide healthcare support to patients in their home environment. They can administer medication and perform procedures for patients who are unable to travel outside of their homes. This can be valuable for families and carers who are caring for vulnerable or elderly people.
Ambulatory Care Pharmacist
Ambulatory care pharmacists provide care for patients with chronic illnesses and conditions. They work in various ambulatory settings such as outpatient centers and dialysis centers.
They can provide physical assessments and routine health checks. They can also recommend therapy options.
A military pharmacist provides medical support to service personnel. Military pharmacists assist doctors and other healthcare professionals to treat illnesses and diseases. They can provide advice to patients on dosage, side effects, and usage of medications.
Military pharmacists can work in a variety of environments. This could include military ships, outposts, and bases depending on where they apply.
Learn More About Pharmacy Jobs
So, what does a pharmacist do? A pharmacist’s role can include a range of services depending on their discipline. A pharmacist’s main job is to provide medical support and guidance to their patients.
Do you want to learn more about how to work for a pharmacy? The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy’s student center can tell you more about what you need to apply for pharmacy jobs.
Did you find this article useful? Read more like this on our blog!