The national day of the pharmacist – celebrated on January 20 – was created to honor the profession, which is considered extremely important to maintain the health of the population.
The date was suggested by the Brazilian Pharmaceutical Association (ABF) in 1916. However, it was only recognized by the Federal Pharmacy Council in March 2007.
Since then, the date was set to value the work of thousands of professionals in the field, who work in Brazil to improve the quality of life for everyone.
What is the pharmacist for?
The professional who works in the field of pharmacy and biochemistry usually performs numerous functions, many of them little known by the population. Knowing better the different areas of activity of this profession, can be important for the final consumer, because this way he will be able to evaluate more seriously the product that comes into his hands.
The pharmacist can work in many functions, here are a few:
- Quality of food consumed. Control helps prevent toxic substances from being ingested by the population;
- Creation of products used in the beauty area, such as cosmetics and personal hygiene products;
- Analyze all medications and beauty / personal care products, to see if they can cause any damage to the patient’s health and if they really fulfill the function assigned to them;
- Discover new substances or find new indications for active ingredients previously used;
- Perform laboratory tests to detect the presence of possible diseases (infections, intoxication);
- Work in laboratories to prepare biological products, immunotherapies, serums, vaccines, allergens, among others;
- Preparation of products for veterinary use;
- Industrial scale production of products such as: insecticides, rodenticides and disinfectants;
- Control of substances responsible for air pollution and treatments used during the dumping of large industries;
- Analysis and control of the quality of the water offered for human consumption, in addition to the waters of swimming pools and beaches.
The pharmacy course lasts an average of 5 years. In Brazil, it is available around 440 colleges, including federal and private ones. About 100 thousand candidates are trying to get one of the 50 thousand vacancies available to study pharmacy in the country. In other words, in practice, the competition is for two candidates per vacancy. Each year, more than 16 thousand new pharmacists appear throughout the Brazilian territory.
The colleges that offer the best pharmacy course in Brazil are: the Federal University of Alfenas, the Federal University of Paraná and also the Federal University of Minas Gerais. Throughout the course, students will delve into subjects such as biology, chemistry and health sciences. In addition, they learn to control the quality of medicines, cosmetology, pharmaceutical assistance and also food technology.
In addition to these subjects, there is a lot of practical classes. In laboratories, students learn to perform cytological and hematological exams, in addition to doing toxicological analysis and preparing formulas for cosmetics and medicines. The internship is mandatory during the period of college. The companies that most often hire students are compounding pharmacies and also hospitals.
In addition to these options, students can also be offered internships in the following areas: cosmetics or food industries, personal care products industries, toxicology and clinical analysis laboratories. During the internship, the student performs activities related to the supply of medicines, chemical, microbiological and physical quality control of raw materials and products. They also assist in the development of research projects.
Over time, Brazilians began to consume more and more. And, with that, the pharmaceutical and cosmetics market has increased a lot. The population is increasingly concerned with taking care, especially when it comes to the aesthetic issue. Because of this, creams, special shampoos, anti-aging products, among others, started to be produced on a large scale, increasing demand and job opportunities in this area.
Pharmacists can also act in the quality control of companies related to food, medicine and laboratories. Every pharmacy and drugstore needs at least one pharmacist to offer assistance to customers and monitor the sale of products. Currently, pharmacies are in constant growth because they offer products that are highly necessary for the quality of life of the population.
Salary: how much does a pharmacist earn?
The salary of pharmacists who work at drugstore counters is around 2 thousand reais. In the industrial department, the value is usually a little lower. Despite this, in hospitals the salary can vary according to the function performed, reaching up to 5,000 reais.
CR Pro, the ideal tool for healthcare professionals
Since 2000, Consulta Remédios has been one of the health tools most used by the population, mainly by health professionals. After several launches, CR Pro was created, a work tool totally aimed at thousands of health professionals.
Its structure has several filters (reference, generic, similar, interchangeable and biological similar), specially designed to facilitate the daily work of pharmacists who need quick and easy information. The available filters allow the verification of data related to EAN, class, PMC (maximum consumer price) and PF (factory price). In addition to TISS and TUSS, drug codes for health and government plans.
Access CR Pro here : Information for Healthcare Professionals
Main areas of expertise
Find out more about the main areas of expertise of professionals trained in pharmacy:
- Acupuncture: According to Ordinance number 971/06, from the Ministry of Health, specialization can be exercised by pharmacists who have the title of specialist in this practice. The practice aims at well-being and is currently used as an alternative and preventive therapy.
- Clinical laboratory administration: Search for complementary diagnoses based on laboratory analysis.
- Pharmaceutical administration: Specialization allows the professional to manage pharmaceutical establishments with quality.
- Hospital administration: Enables the professional to manage and put into practice management techniques to organize the different sectors of the hospital area.
- Clinical analysis: Works as an aid in the laboratory diagnosis of several areas such as: immunology, hematology, biochemistry, parasitology, etc.
- Home care in multidisciplinary teams: The professional will provide assistance to the patient who is receiving medical treatment at home.
- Pre-hospital urgent and emergency care: Usually performed by a specialized team in cases that require urgent care. They usually help mainly patients who are at risk for life and need correct medication administration.
- Pharmaceutical audit: It is usually one of the specialties with the best salary. The pharmacist who works in the audit area usually works in industrials, consultancies and government agencies (municipal, state or federal).
- Clinical bacteriology : Search for bacteria (microscopic organisms) and check which infections they can cause.
- Umbilical cord bank: Look for ways to collect and use stem cells found in the umbilical cord.
- Human milk bank: The professional seeks to use conservation methods so that the nutrients in breast milk are not lost. In addition, he can perform laboratory tests on samples when needed.
- Blood bank: The pharmacist is responsible for collecting and storing donated blood, in addition to analyzing samples and checking for possible diseases before their distribution to patients who need transfusion.
- Semen bank: They are responsible for the correct storage of donor semen, so that it can be used in the future by patients who wish to have children.
- Organ bank: They perform tests and look for ways of storage and conservation so that the organs can be transplanted successfully.
- Biopharmacy: They study the physicochemical properties of the active ingredients used in medicines.
- Molecular biology: They study the molecular structures of a specific material (analyze its possible functions).
- Clinical biochemistry: Pharmacists are responsible for the analysis of exams and laboratory tests (example: blood count).
- Bromatology: Responsible for analyzing the composition and the state of conservation of the food, in addition to its properties (caloric and nutritional value).
- Clinical cytology: The specialization was created so that professionals in the field are qualified to carry out the collection and interpretation of exams in the correct way.
- Cytopathology: They study possible diseases with the aid of the microscope, evaluating the structures of the cells made available in samples.
- Cytochemistry: They study the chemical compositions of cells, in addition to their biological processes.
- Quality control and water treatment, potability and environmental control: They seek to establish quality standards and analyze the water used for human consumption.
- Vector control and urban pests: Establish rules to prevent the spread of pests, based on the analysis of possible forms of control.
- Cosmetology: They are dedicated to the development and research for the commercialization of cosmetic products.
- DNA tests : They carry out sample analyzes to define paternity (discover the biological father / mother).
- Pharmacist in the physical-chemical analysis of the soil: They carry out analyzes of samples collected directly from the soil.
- Anthroposophical pharmacy: They use alternative therapies, such as herbal medicine and homeopathy.
- Clinical pharmacy: They are concerned with the correct use of medicines administered to patients.
- Community pharmacy: They usually work in health posts.
- Fractionation of medicines: Responsible for manufacturing medicines that can be sold in unit doses.
- Dermatological pharmacy: They handle specific medications for dermatological issues.
- Homeopathic pharmacy: Manipulation of substances used in homeopathy.
- Hospital pharmacy: Assist hospitalized patients.
- Industrial pharmacy: They are responsible for the different stages of production of medicines on an industrial scale (legislation, registration, etc.).
- Magisterial pharmacy: They produce different formulas for handling medicines.
- Nuclear pharmacy (radiopharmacy): It is a place specialized in nuclear materials. It is there that the preparation of radiopharmaceuticals, products used to diagnose and treat cancer, occurs.
- Oncology pharmacy: It is the place that sells products that will be used by people suffering from cancer of the most diverse types.
- Public pharmacy: These are the pharmacies provided by the municipalities, the state and also the federal government.
- Veterinary pharmacy: This branch is relatively new. It allows the handling of medications for animals.
- Pharmacy-school: It was created to facilitate the population’s access to medicines. Mainly to the low-income population, since generic, similar and related drugs are sold at a price below normal.
- Clinical pharmacokinetics: Its function is to apply the concepts of pharmacokinetics in the clinical part by monitoring medications. The goal is to optimize pharmacology by maintaining the plasma concentration of drugs within therapeutic concentrations.
- Pharmacoepidemiology: It is the combination of pharmacology and epidemiology. It is the study of the adverse reactions of medicines in the population after their commercialization.
- Phytotherapy: Seeks to prevent, treat and cure diseases with the use of plants.
- Gases and mixtures for therapeutic use: These are gases and mixtures used in the composition of anesthesia.
- Human genetics: It is part of the diagnosis made by molecular techniques.
- Health services waste management: It is the pharmacist’s role to take care of the discarded materials so that there is no contamination of the environment.
- Clinical hematology: It is the role of the pharmacist to study the biochemistry of blood to unravel diseases.
- Hemotherapy: It is the science that studies the treatment of diseases using human blood.
- Histopathology: They try to define if the histology is normal or with some disease.
- Histochemistry: It is the study of the constitution of cells and tissues.
- Immunocytochemistry: These are techniques that use antibodies to identify cells that play the role of antigens in tissues.
- Immunohistochemistry: It consists of an antibody and antigen reaction that occurs in the analyzed tissue, marking the reaction with dye.
- Clinical immunology: It has the role of investigating and guiding the patient in the diagnosis through the results of laboratory tests.
- Immunopathology: It is the study of the body’s immune reactions associated with diseases.
- Clinical mycology: It is the branch that studies microscopic fungi capable of causing diseases in people and animals.
- Clinical microbiology: It is the study of the main microbial agents that cause infectious diseases in humans.
- Clinical parasitology: It is the identification of parasites.
- Public health: Operates in pharmacies at health posts, outpatient clinics and hospitals.
- Clinical toxicology: This is the area that addresses the diagnosis and prevention of intoxications caused by substances in water, medicines, food and even in the air.
- Environmental toxicology: It is the area that works in the study of intoxicated environments.
- Food toxicology: It is the science that studies the harmful effects resulting from the interactions of chemical substances with the organism, under specific conditions of exposure.
- Sports toxicology: It is the area that reveals cases of doping or the abuse of substances by athletes.
- Pharmaceutical toxicology: It is the area that studies the relationship of drugs and medications in the human or animal organism.
- Forensic Toxicology: It is the area that operates investigating deaths caused by chemicals, overdoses and other types of death.
- Occupational toxicology: Study toxicology caused at workplaces and workers.
- Veterinary toxicology: It is the study of toxic substances that affect food and also animals.
- Health surveillance: Responsible for health surveillance standards. Pharmacists must carry out site inspections.
- Clinical virology: Identification and detection of viruses that cause various diseases to the population.
Congratulations to all professionals working in the pharmacy area and thank you very much for helping to take care of our well-being!