Clinical pharmacologists are medical professionals who specialise in assessing the safety and effectiveness of treatments done through the use of drugs. Such specialists would carry out regular research to test the effectiveness and side-effects of a variety of drugs. They may also run clinics in which patients with conditions such as epilepsy can acquire therapeutic help. Such specialists are often in demand for their experience and knowledge when it comes to things like advising health authorities on particular drugs.

A pharmacologist would need to monitor any new medication to ensure that it safe to be given to patients, and possibly, to be made available in the wider market. This is a profession that would typically take place in hospitals or clinics. To become a clinical pharmacologist you will need to have not only an extensive knowledge of the medical discipline, but would also need a good understanding of the sciences. You may also need to carry out teaching duties for any newcomers to the profession, and there is the possibility to carry out research in your own time.

Work activities

  • Work closely with people from research organisations and committees.
  • Plan and carry out testing into new and existing medications.
  • Continue to broaden your knowledge of pharmaceutical medications throughout your career.
  • Use computers and other apparatus for testing drugs.
  • Give advice on the use of drugs based on your extensive knowledge of the practice.
  • Assess the cost-effectiveness of drugs.
  • Ascertain through testing the benefits and side-effects of drugs.
  • Teach other medical students about the fundamentals of pharmacology.
  • Run therapeutic clinics for patients with medical conditions such as hypertension.
  • Advise health authorities and other organisations on drug effectiveness.
  • Work with a range of medical professionals.
  • Attend meetings and conferences concerning new drugs available for treatments.

Essential skills

  • Excellent communication skills.
  • A desire to ensure that drugs made available are as safe as possible.
  • Ability to work and cooperate with a host of medical professionals, including doctors.
  • A keen interest in pharmacology and therapeutics.
  • An extensive knowledge of pharmaceutical drugs available.
  • Methodological approach when testing the affects of drugs.
  • Confident of your own medical opinion.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Organised and professional manner.
  • Able to continue studying and attending exhibitions throughout your career in order to keep up-to-date with any advances in the testing of drugs.