Pharmacists give advice on the use and supply of medicines and medical appliances.

Day-to-day tasks

As a pharmacist you could:

  • dispense medicines in a pharmacy, hospital or GP practice
  • give advice about prescriptions, drug dosages, risks and how to use and store medication
  • run screening programmes and buy, test and distribute medicines in a hospital
  • manage stock and supervise and train staff like junior pharmacists
  • do research into new medicines or run clinical trials

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • customer service skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • maths knowledge
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to read English

Industry Qualifications

To become a pharmacist, you'll need to complete a master's of pharmacy (MPharm) degree, approved by the General Pharmaceutical Council which takes 4 years.

You'll then need to complete the pharmacist foundation training scheme which takes 1 year.

If you do not have the qualifications to get onto a master's of pharmacy degree, you could do a pharmacy foundation degree which takes 2 years.

You could then take a job as a pharmacy assistant or pharmacy technician and apply to join the master's degree in its second year.

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