The pharmacist’s advanced knowledge of medications and therapies makes this professional a valued advisor of physicians and patients alike. Though the primary responsibility of the Pharmacist is to dispense drugs prescribed by physicians and other health practitioners, they are becoming more and more involved in drug therapy decision making and patient counseling. Aside from patient advice, pharmacists play a role in education all health practitioners on the selection, dosages, and side effects of medications. Pharmacists must understand the use, composition, and effects of drugs.
The current degree requirement is a doctor of pharmacy (Pharm.D.), which usually takes at least six years to complete and includes two years of undergraduate coursework and four years graduate-level pharmacy work. To be licensed, a person must be 21 years of age, be a graduate of an accredited school of pharmacy, have completed an internship under the supervision of a licensed pharmacist, and pass an exam. Continuing education requirements must be met.