Hospital pharmacist

What they do

Hospital pharmacists produce and supply medicines and pharmaceutical products in hospitals throughout the state. They work closely with medical and nursing staff to prepare and supervise the dispensing of medications, conduct clinical pharmaceutical trials, and prepare products for patient use. They also educate healthcare staff and patients about medication therapies and common drug interactions and possible side effects.

Working conditions

Hospital pharmacists may work in an outpatient hospital dispensary, or in a central dispensary with medical and nursing staff providing medications for inpatients in hospitals. They often prepare medications for injections and intravenous (IV) therapy, and monitor the dispensing of clinical trial medications. They may be required to wear protective clothing.

Hospital pharmacists may be required to do shift work including weekends and public holidays, and their working times may be irregular.

Tools and technologies

Hospital pharmacists often use laboratory equipment, a mortar and pestle, and measuring equipment to combine and prepare medicines. They use computers to consult pharmaceutical manuals, and may have to wear sterile protective clothing including gloves, coats, masks and goggles while preparing medicines. They may work with a range of pharmaceutical and medicinal drugs in tablet, liquid, injection, inhaler or ointment form.

How do I become one?

Education and training

To become a hospital pharmacist, you need to study a degree in pharmacy at university. Alternatively, you can study a bachelor degree in a related field, followed by a postgraduate qualification in pharmacy.

Curtin University offers a four-year Bachelor of Pharmacy. This is the only undergraduate degree specialising in pharmacy in Western Australia. Curtin University and the University of Western Australia both offer a two-year Master of Pharmacy.
Contact the universities you are interested in for more information.

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