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The pharmaceutical industry is broad and encompasses everything to do with developing, producing and distributing medicine. Working in this field means that your time is ultimately dedicated to improving people’s lives through medicine.
As a pharmaceutical professional, you will have a high level of responsibility towards the public and ensuring that they receive the best possible treatment. Therefore, most of the roles require advanced education and will also be paid quite highly.
A common choice for graduates within the pharmaceutical industry is to become a pharmacologist. Through this role you will be involved with the research and development side of pharmaceuticals. They conduct all of the research and trials into medicine before the drugs are able to enter the mainstream market. There are numerous areas that you could choose to specialise in as a pharmacologist such as veterinary, neural or clinical pharmacology.
According to the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) more than 65% of all medical research and development in the UK is carried out by the pharmaceutical industry, so your work will have a tangible impact on millions of people.
Many pharmaceutical graduates choose to become a pharmacist, which is usually a more customer-facing role. They are responsible for ensuring that people receive the right medicine for them and know the recommended dosages and potential side effects. They also provide general healthcare advice to customers. As a pharmacist you could also be involved with writing guidelines for drug use and preparing medication according to industry standards.
There are also more commercial roles available in pharmaceuticals, such sales representatives and support staff in pharmacies, which will not require a degree.