An overview of careers in the pharmaceutical industry

Richard Bray ImageConsidering a career in Industry? Not sure where to start, or want to know all of your options? Richard Bray, Consultant Clinical Pharmacist and Technical Director of Pharmacology, takes us through a comprehensive breakdown of the pharmaceutical industry, highlighting the different roles and what to expect therein.

Read more An overview of careers in the pharmaceutical industry

Coping with exam stress

caroleThere is a word that has the unique power to bring a storm of emotions on every student. It is more often than not a synonym of stress, panic, anxiety and self-doubt. You’ve guessed it: EXAMS!

Some extraordinary people thrive when they are faced with exams. They find a way to use the pressure to their advantage, and they succeed. Unfortunately, for us mere mortals, exams can be a tough pill to swallow. Like many of you, I have had my fair share of worry with exams looming just around the corner. Over the years however, I have learned how to overcome these insecurities and how to deal with them.

Read more Coping with exam stress

Keeping up to date as a locum pharmacist

Daniel Sutcliffe - 150Working as a locum pharmacist provides the opportunity to experience lots of different working environments and ways of practicing. However, being self-employed places a large responsibility on your shoulders for keeping up date with current practices in pharmacy. Alongside new medicines and clinical guidelines there’s also new systems and processes being rolled out all the time. With so much change occurring it’s essential for pharmacists to be on top of their game. Read more Keeping up to date as a locum pharmacist

Adaptive clinical trials – could patients benefit?

Photo - Liz Allen

by Liz Allen, Visiting Professor, Faculty of Life Sciences and Medicine, King’s College London and Quintiles, Early Clinical Development

What is a clinical trial?
Clinical trials are studies designed to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of potential new medicines. Clinical trials are divided into four phases (Phase I, II, III and real world late phase studies sometime called Phase IV).

Phase 1 requires a small number of subjects, usually healthy volunteers though more recently such studies involve small numbers of patients. As the development moves from phase to phase increasingly large numbers of patients become involved and the cost escalates. It is estimated that about 40% to 50% of drugs that enter phase III studies will fail, by which point a pharmaceutical company will have invested close to one billion pounds. Read more Adaptive clinical trials – could patients benefit?

The GPhC’s continuous quality improvement programme is coming. How will the RPS Faculty and Foundation programmes help you meet their requirements?

Royal Pharmaceutical 109 - Stuart SempleOver the next few years, The General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC) will continue to introduce new provisions to assure the continuous quality improvement of pharmacists.

Continuous quality improvement is the name given to a range of methods that can be used to support pharmacists to demonstrate their ability to meet GPhC standards over the course of their careers.

In light of these new requirements, Stuart Semple MRPharmS, Head of Faculty at the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, explains how the RPS Faculty and Foundation programmes can help you prepare to meet the forthcoming requirements.

“Focusing on the recent reviews from the GPhC regarding the process for revalidation, it is likely that the aim is to make the existing CPD requirements easier and more meaningful for pharmacists. The new process will be introduced within the next few years.

The updated GPhC requirements are likely to meet the following overarching principles:

  • A minimum of 9 entries per year
  • Peer review will be central to the process
  • Submitting evidence that demonstrates the impact of practice on patient care outcomes
  • Submitting evidence that demonstrates the scope of practice.

These principles align wholly with the RPS Faculty process. In addition, the process helps you to identify career achievements and potential developments, identify your strengths and weaknesses, and identify improvement areas in your skills and knowledge.”

 

Recognition for you…how you can stand out in a competitive environment

Royal Pharmaceutical 89 - Nahim KhanNahim Khan, (MFRPSI MRPharmS) community pharmacist explains how the Faculty and Foundation programmes demonstrate their ability to make you stand out from the crowd.

Why did you become a Faculty member?

I initially started the Faculty process as I wanted the recognition of the hard work and commitment I had put into my professional development, also to gain a head start with the GPhC’s upcoming continuous quality improvement.

 

How has the Faculty benefitted you and your career?

In pharmacy we tend to reflect on things going wrong, try to make sense of the situation and act on it. The Faculty was different; it was about reflecting on your achievements. This was a great confidence boost and has propelled me to follow more opportunities. I now have a portfolio that I can take to appraisals or job interviews.

 

Why would you recommend the Faculty to a colleague?

Identifying strengths and weaknesses highlights key areas which allows you to prioritise your development. The process will ensure you have a well-rounded skill set and experience that would support patient safety. You’ll also receive a Professional Development Plan (PDP). This is a really useful document providing an objective view on your current development and objectives for the next five years.

 

Anything else that you would like to share with potential Faculty members?

Consider benefitting from the support of an experienced colleague and look for a Faculty mentor. You could also take a look at the RPS online support webinars or see if there are any LPF Faculty events in your area. My face to face assessment was a highlight in my career as the feedback from the expert assessors stated that I had solid knowledge and were impressed by my enthusiasm.

Begin your Faculty journey today

 

How to balance your studies and your social life

David Beaumont - PhotoAt last, summer is just around the corner but you’ll probably have to tackle exams before you can officially switch into ‘summer mode’. At this time of year many of you will be busy revising but it’s really important that you get the balance right between your revision, part-time work and relaxing.
Here’s my advice to help you achieve this balance and make this upcoming exam season your best yet…
Read more How to balance your studies and your social life

Faculty: Expert Professional Practice

Dilip - 150by Dilip Joshi FFRPS MRPharmS

Leading-edge practice, doing new and innovative things, pushing boundaries in our profession are all things that many would identify with and have always appealed to me, however, I have to admit I did not start my career with a grand plan to do any of these things.

When I first qualified – more years ago than I care to remember – community pharmacy was very much a ‘Cinderella’ branch of the profession. Industry was seen as glamorous; hospital as clinical and academia as innovative but community pharmacy had a ‘shop-keeper’ image with a focus on supply. Today, I am pleased to say, community pharmacy is at the forefront of the profession having had more developmental change than any other branch. The appeal for me has always been that you are able to directly see the result of your interventions and over time, I have seen the impact on patients, first-hand as a supplementary and independent prescriber, providing clinics within the pharmacy consultation room, performing medicines reviews and achieving excellence in care through collaboration with other healthcare professionals. Read more Faculty: Expert Professional Practice