Clinical pharmacy is generally a dynamic field with lots of different job opportunities. For example, clinical pharmacist jobs are available in a wide number of settings. Such pharmacists may work in hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, research laboratories, and academic institutions. They may also be required to perform a wide variety of different functions, such as monitoring prescriptions, preparing drugs, and mentoring pharmacist interns. The common thread between the different clinical pharmacist jobs is a general emphasis on the notion of patient care. This means that these professionals work to promote and make sure medication is used in a safe and effective manner.
Clinical pharmacists generally have a comprehensive educational background. As such, they will have usually earned a Doctor of Pharmacy degree. They are usually well versed in areas such as pharmaceuticals, clinical sciences, behavioral sciences, and medical ethics.
One of the basic differences between the various clinical pharmacist jobs is the work environment. For example, some pharmacists will work in a hospital setting — administering drugs to patients while tracking the medicines' effectivity, and making sure that the healthcare received is optimal. This type of clinical pharmacist generally works closely with doctors and nurses, to help maximize patient care. Pharmacists may discuss, with a physician, the best possible drug treatment for the patient. In this capacity, a clinical pharmacist may help determine proper dosages, and make staff aware of any possible side effects related to a drug.
A pharmacist working in a clinic will have much the same responsibilities as one who works in a hospital. Many times, he or she will be required to provide instruction or information about drugs to the medical staff. This can include a general introduction to various drugs that are on the market, and their advantages and disadvantages. He or she may also educate the staff on the proper use and administration of drugs. This can be in addition to his or her other duties of ensuring quality patient care. Sometimes, the clinical pharmacist will also make drug orders for the facility.
Some clinical pharmacist jobs entail a mentorship or instruction role. This typically means that these professionals oversee young pharmacist interns in various tasks, such as the preparation of drugs for patient use. They may also familiarize interns with the different types of medications that are available. Clinical pharmacists can also work in an exclusively academic role, by speaking at conferences and writing research papers for peer-reviewed scientific journals.