Traditionally in India, the role of pharmacists is confined to pharmacies or hospitals with no specific job profile. But with The Pharmacy Council of India (PCI) recognizing Pharm.D (A Doctor of Pharmacy) course in India, there is an increase in the scope of pharmacy to meet the ever-growing needs of healthcare industry. There are potential non-traditional job opportunities for PharmD graduates in India in various areas.
One of the promising career options is pharmacovigilance, the science related to collection, detection, assessment, monitoring and prevention of adverse effects associated with drugs. Most of the drug companies based in developing countries outsource their pharmacovigilance activities to corporate giants such as Wipro, Accenture, Cognizant, Quintiles, TCS, iGate Patni etc in India and offer an average salary Rs. 18 to 26k /month. National Pharmacovigilance Program of India (PvPI) launched by Government of India facilitates time to time reporting of pharmacovigilance program from various healthcare organizations. Another important source of employment for Pharm.D graduates is academia. The PCI has approved PharmD degree holders eligible for working as lecturers. The salary in academia for PharmD graduates is 15-30k /month.
Pharm.D graduates are eligible to be medical writers or medical advisors in pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, medical device and managed care companies. Medical writers work with physicians, medical scientists and subject matter experts (SMEs) and prepare regulatory documents, journals and other scientific documents. Medical advisors facilitate knowledge transfer between the medical community and the companies. The starting salary for medical writers ranges from Rs. 15 to 20k /month. Contract Research Organizations (CRO) hire fresh Pharm. D graduates as Clinical Research Coordinators (CRC) who will be promoted to Clinical Research Associates (CRA) with 1-2 years of experience. Corporate hospitals such as Apollo hospitals, Wockhardt Pharma and Asia Columbia hire Pharm. D graduates as clinical pharmacists and prescription analysts. In fact, Pharm. D graduates play a key role in establishing clinical pharmacy services that help corporate hospitals get international hospital accreditation in India.
Pharm.D graduates can work as community practitioner who can prescribe medications for chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disorders etc. They are also eligible to work as drug experts, drug interaction specialists and nutritionists. Also there are a high number of jobs available for Pharm.D graduates in medical coding, medical billing and health insurance industry.
Retail chain pharmacies such as Apollo, Medplus etc., Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) and state level government medical companies such as Tamilnadu Medical Services Corporation (TNMSC), Kerala Medical Services Corporation (KMSCL) and West Bengal Medical Services Corporation (WBMSC) etc., hire pharmD graduates for various positions. Ultimately, PharmD graduates have become an affordable and reasonable alternative to medical graduates for many small scale organizations.
There are various industry endorsed certificate and diploma courses available with the James Lind Institute in pharmacovigilance, clinical research, medical writing and regulatory affairs etc that can be taken up online by people pursuing a Pharm.D. These programs highly increase job opportunities for Pharm. D graduates and provides them an extra edge to succeed.
James Lind students are employed in some of the leading global organizations such as Novartis, Cognizant, Biocon, Pfizer, Accenture, GlaxoSmithKline, GE healthcare, TCS, Dr. Roddy’s, iGATE Patni, Ranbaxy, Quintiles, Thomson Reuters, Global Hospitals, TTK healthcare, Wockhardt etc to name a few.