In what can be music to the ears of thousands of Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm D) graduates and their parents, the central government is seriously contemplating to recognize the six-year clinical pharmacy course and will soon create posts for the passed out graduates in the health and allied sectors in the country, it is learnt.
According to Pharmacy Council of India (PCI) president Dr. B Suresh, creation of specific job opportunities for Pharm D graduates at government level was one of the foremost demands of the PCI. Since 2008, when the course was launched in India, PCI has been pursuing this issue with the Union health ministry for placements in the government sector for the clinical pharmacy graduates.
It is leant that the government is going to recognize the efforts of the PCI and the long pending demand of the passed out graduates shortly, he said and added that Pharm D jobs at the government sector are continuously being pursued and the request will soon get government attention.
Recently, the associations of Pharm D holders all over the country had once again written to the union government to approve the course and create opportunities for them in the health sector. They apprised the government that in addition to the clinical pharmacy service areas in hospitals, they should be considered for areas wherever drug research and developments are conducted. Associations representing more than 60,000 Pharm D graduates from across the country have strongly demanded to the government to ensure their services in the government sector.
Although the government was lagging in creating posts for clinical pharmacists all these years, private sector hospitals and research centres had started appointing Pharm D graduates as soon as the first batch came out. With the persistent efforts of the PCI, two years ago the Union government made the course equal to the PG program and later it announced that Pharm D graduates were eligible to apply for all posts in the government sector wherever D Pharm, B Pharm and M Pharm qualifications were mentioned as eligible requirements. However, job creation was continuing as an issue with the government due to various reasons.
Responding to the information from the PCI, the president of the Association of Pharmacy Teachers of India (APTI) Odisha branch, Dr Mihir Kumar Kar said it is high time for the government to create post of ‘Clinical Pharmacist’ in all healthcare institutions including private hospitals. He said, apart from the PCI there was nobody to sensitize the government and put a demand to them to make use of the potential of the doctoral pharmacy students for a strong healthcare service in India.
Giving kudos to the PCI and its president, Dr Mihir said clinical pharmacy service has to be made mandatory in all healthcare institutions. Criticizing other associations of pharmacists, he said no association in the country, including APTI, has made a demand to the government to recognize Pharm D and to create suitable jobs for them.
According to him, diploma pharmacists should be made for dispensing drugs, degree pharmacists should be assigned in industry, post graduates should be reserved for education and the Pharm D should be set aside for clinical pharmacy services and R&D jobs.