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What to do to be a physician?

What can i do to become a pharmacist. My brother is a biochemist and doings extremely well. I want to be a scientist like him but don't want to do what he did. Help out

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Subject: Career question for you

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Martin’s Answer

Michael, your inquiry is wonderfully open-ended and expansive. Based on what sparks your curiosity, you'll need to identify the scientific field that truly captivates your interest. Should you choose to delve into research, you'll require not just a solid understanding of the sciences, but also a good grasp of statistics and proficient writing skills. Pharmacy is just one facet of the vast healthcare landscape, teeming with numerous subspecialties. These include exciting areas like the development of new products, refining existing ones, and conducting trials for products before they hit the market. You also have the freedom to choose based on your preferences, whether it's interacting with patients, working on computer models, or conducting chemical research. As you navigate through your college courses, your passions and aspirations will gradually come into sharper focus.
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MUHAMMAD’s Answer

Hi,

It’s wonderful that you’re inspired by your brother’s success and want to pursue a career as a pharmacist. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you achieve your goal:

### Steps to Become a Pharmacist:

1. **Complete Prerequisite Education:**
- **High School:** Focus on science courses such as biology, chemistry, and mathematics.
- **Undergraduate Studies:** Enroll in a pre-pharmacy program or complete required prerequisite courses in subjects like chemistry, biology, physics, and math. Many students pursue a Bachelor’s degree in a related field, but it’s not always required as long as you complete the necessary coursework.

2. **Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT):**
- Prepare for and take the PCAT, if required by the pharmacy schools you are applying to. This test assesses your knowledge and aptitude in scientific and academic skills relevant to pharmacy.

3. **Apply to Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) Programs:**
- Research accredited Pharm.D. programs and apply to schools that fit your preferences and career goals. The Pharm.D. program typically lasts four years.

4. **Complete Pharm.D. Program:**
- The Pharm.D. curriculum includes coursework in pharmacology, medicinal chemistry, pharmacy law, and clinical practice. You’ll also complete internships or clinical rotations in various healthcare settings to gain practical experience.

5. **Licensure:**
- After graduating with a Pharm.D., you must pass the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) to practice as a pharmacist.
- Some states may also require you to pass additional exams, such as the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination (MPJE), which tests knowledge of pharmacy law.

6. **Consider Specialization or Further Education:**
- If you’re interested in specializing in a specific area of pharmacy, such as clinical pharmacy, research, or pharmacogenomics, you might consider pursuing additional residency programs, fellowships, or certifications.

### Additional Tips:

- **Gain Experience:** Work or volunteer in pharmacies, hospitals, or related settings to gain relevant experience and insights into the profession.
- **Network:** Join professional organizations like the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) to connect with other professionals and stay updated on industry trends.
- **Stay Informed:** Keep up with advancements in pharmaceutical sciences and healthcare to remain knowledgeable and competitive in the field.

Pharmacy is a dynamic and rewarding field that offers various career paths, including community pharmacy, hospital pharmacy, research, and industry roles. By following these steps, you can embark on a fulfilling career as a pharmacist and contribute significantly to healthcare.

If you have any further questions or need more specific advice, feel free to ask!

Best of luck on your journey to becoming a pharmacist!

Kind regards,
Career counsellor Muhammad Shakeel
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Martha’s Answer

Hi Michael, our country needs pharmacists so I am glad to see your question. I have added two links that provide more information about the profession and career prospects, as well as necessary education. On the second link, check all the tabs for the full information.

Forms of your question have been asked on Career Village before so you may want to search for further perspectives.

Good luck!

Martha recommends the following next steps:

Forbes step-by-step guide - https://www.forbes.com/advisor/education/healthcare/become-a-pharmacist/
Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) - https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/pharmacists.htm
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