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Purpose and Mission
Pharmacists dispense medications that doctors have prescribed to patients. They prepare, supervise and dispense tablets, ointments and other medications and provide advice on their use and their interactions with other medications.
They are also knowledgeable on the various drug manufacturers and research and advise their patients on how drugs are produced, stored, whether generic brand equivalents are available, quality control and the distribution of pharmaceutical products.
Pharmacists play a critical role in advising people on both prescription and over-the-counter medications, including dosage advice, potential side effects and therapeutic effects. These healthcare professional are involved in the development and research of medications and other healthcare products and the development of legal and professional practice standards, government controls and regulation guidelines for medical products.
Some pharmacists are employed by hospitals and clinics, and in most cases report to a department head or chief of pharmacy. Others are employed in retail pharmacy, typically working at drug stores or grocery stores, and they usually report to a pharmacy manager or store manager.
Most pharmacists have at least some supervisory responsibilities, including supervising pharmacy techs and overseeing the operations of the pharmacy. More experienced pharmacists may be responsible for training of new staff.
Pharmacists have earned a four-year Bachelor of Pharmacy degree. Of note, a Graduate Diploma of Pharmaceutical Science is available for those who have already completed a natural science degree. Postgraduate degrees or a Master of Pharmacy are available to those who have completed their undergraduate studies.
Most Pharmacists are members of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia Ltd and/or The Royal Australian Chemical Institute.