Careers in other areas of pharmacy
As you can see, pharmacists can be found working across many different sectors. Whether they are working with patients, researching medicines or teaching at a university, together they play an integral role to the health of the nation.
Here are some other areas where pharmacists can apply their skills and knowledge.
Pharmacy is one of the most valued and trustworthy professions, with organisations set up to ensure the protection of public health. Regulatory bodies such as the GPhC and MHRA are committed to maintaining an excellent track record for the safe delivery of services and care.
The GPhC, the regulator of the pharmacy profession, will ensure that pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, pharmacy owners and premises are fit to safely deliver a wider range of services.
The MHRA safeguards the public through the effective regulation of medicines and medical devices used in healthcare. Their job is to ensure that medicines submitted by drug companies are safe before they can be manufactured and marketed to the public.
“I am a veterinary pharmacist running a business that operates from an agricultural pharmacy. My role is to advise farmers on veterinary medicines, nutritional supplements, seeds and provide a full service for crop production. Agricultural pharmacy is very dynamic and I spend my time advising farmers on how best to treat a wide variety of livestock ailments. It’s a rewarding job and although working with farmers can be challenging it is certainly always interesting!”
Rod Jones, Veterinary Pharmacist
As a veterinary pharmacist you can make a valuable contribution to the welfare of animals by supplying a professional service to pet owners. Pharmacists are closely involved in the supply of animal medicines and the dispensing of veterinary prescriptions.
Pharmacists in rural settings are often involved in helping the farming industry by supplying medicines for farm livestock.
An interest in veterinary pharmacy can take you into almost every branch of the profession. As a community pharmacist you will be able to offer advice to customers about the health of their pets, whether cats, dogs, rabbits or even fish.
You may wish to get involved in the supply of medicines to livestock farmers for use in cattle, sheep, pigs or goats. This is an area of the pharmacy profession that requires a high level of business and selling skills and may be a challenge that appeals to you.
Veterinary pharmacy can also take you into teaching, industry or a government body such as the Veterinary Medicines Directorate. If you're interested in veterinary pharmacy then find out which schools of pharmacy provide a veterinary option by contacting their admissions departments and make sure in addition that you have an element of veterinary pharmacy in your pre-registration year.
Pharmacy in the military
"I had opportunities to accompany medical equipment, flying in Chinook and Sea King helicopters and I visited medical facilities, including the British Hospital. I also worked closely with medical and logistical branches to help ensure medical supplies were delivered in time."
Lt Col Ellie Williams, Senior Pharmacist
Royal Army Medical Corps
Wherever you find the British Army, you will find the Army Medical Services (AMS). They can deploy their services at short notice anywhere in the world to provide medical support to the Armed Forces in war, during conflict or during peacekeeping operations worldwide.
The AMS brings together the Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC), the Royal Army Veterinary Corps (RAVC), the Royal Army Dental Corps (RADC) and The Queen Alexandra's Royal Army Nursing Corps (QARANC).
Soldiers in each four corps enjoy rewarding challenging roles; making a difference to the lives of others and gaining qualifications and skills that are recognised and highly valued in civilian life as well as in the Army. They receive first-class training and professional development, and also experience the extra dimension of adventure, travel, sport and camaraderie.
Pharmacists can be commissioned into the RAMC as Pharmacist officers either as direct entry qualified candidates or via sponsorship (see below). Moreover, RAMC Pharmacist officers may be employed in support of the Royal Navy (RN) or Royal Air Force (RAF).
The Pharmacist Officer's main roles are in the distribution of medical supplies to support current operations and overseas units; the provision of pharmaceutical care within Service hospital units working alongside their civilian colleagues; and in the provision of pharmacy support to GPs at primary care level.
In the medical logistic role, the Pharmacist is responsible for the timely distribution of drugs, dressings and medical equipment in general to all units in the theatre of operations. In Field Hospitals, they provide pharmacy support and advice to the Commanding Officer. Depending on the number of pharmacists deployed at any one time, any one pharmacist could be required to provide advice to other unit commanders on all pharmaceutical matters including storage, distribution, security and the prescribing, dispensing and supply of drugs. As commissioned officers, they also undertake military duties as required by the Commanding Officer and will be expected to develop their leadership and management skills.
You will need to be 34 years old or under, although pharmacists over 34 may be considered in exceptional circumstances.
The Army can offer some sponsorship (Cadetship) to selected undergraduate pharmacy students who would have a return of service of 6 years from MRPharmS.
For more details about this and other information about the Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC) or Army Medical Services (AMS) visit the Army Jobs website.