Pharmacovigilance: A Great Career option for Pharmacy Graduates

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January 23, 2018

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What is Pharmacovigilance?

 Pharmacovigilance is a science of Drug safety which is related to the evaluation, prevention of adverse effects, caused by pharmaceutical products. The  origin of word “Pharmacovigilance” is from: pharmakon (Greek word denotes a drug) and vigilare (Latin word denotes to keep watch). Pharmacovigilance is at the center stage of new drug development as well as post-marketing evaluation of approved pharmaceutical products. Many drugs are withdrawn from or not even brought into the market by Pharmacovigilance.  It is mainly due to the function of Pharmacovigilance professionals that the medicines in the marketplace that we consume are generally safe and all those that are identified hazardous are taken off the market. Pharmacovigilance professionals keep a timely watch on the safety of the medicines in clinical trials as well as the medicines previously being marketed in the market.


Aim and objectives of Pharmacovigilance:

  • The main purpose of pharmacovigilance is to improve the patient’s safety and enhance his care in terms of the use of medicines, including paramedical interventions.
  • Pharmacovigilance also supports public health programs by providing reliable information for the efficient assessment of the risk-benefit profile of medicines.
  • Contribute to the assessment of benefits, uses, side effects, harm, effectiveness, and risk of medicines.
  • Encouraging the safe, rational and more effective (including cost-effective) use of various medicines.
  • support education, understanding and clinical training in pharmacovigilance and its effective availability to the public.


How do they work?

When the side effect of drugs are reported, the Pharmacovigilance professionals enter the event in appropriate databases, follow-up with the event to collect additional information and send these reports to regulatory authorities and other appropriate regulatory bodies.


Main activities or job responsibilities of Pharmacovigilance professionals:

  • Recording and reporting adverse reactions received from healthcare professionals and consumers, in case of creation, reviewing for minimum safety information (MIS).
  • Conducting in-depth interviews with patients and healthcare professionals
  • Developing a thorough knowledge of products by reconciliation and follow up approach
  • Data entry of all details readily available into safety database,
  • Completing periodic safety update reports on drugs and other treatments
  • Writing and reviewing serious adverse effects reports and forms.
  • flagging up early warning signs of adverse effects of drugs
  • Minimising the risk of serious side effects
  • Completing safety audits
  • Working on clinical trials of new drug


Opportunities for Pharmacovigilance Professionals?

People trained in Pharmacovigilance can find excellent employment options in the following organizations:

  • Pharmaceutical Companies (MNCs & Indian) & Biotech companies.
  • Contract Research Organizations (CROs)
  • Regulatory Authorities such as DCG, FDA & CDSCO
  • Clinical Research Organizations.
  • Pharmacovigilance units in Medical colleges & Hospitals
  • Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPOs) such as Accenture, Cognizant, Sciformix Corporation, iGATE etc.


Besides this, students can make their career with following companies like:

Asian clinical trials serene, Dr Reddy’s lab, Zydus,   Bioserve, Clin invent, Intass biopharmaceuticals,  Clintec international, Clinigene, Elly Lilly,  Lupin limited, Glaxo SmithKline, IGATE clinical research, Johnson & Johnson, Lambda therapeutic research, Matrix laboratories ltd., Merck, Novartis, Roche India,  Novo Nordisk, Pfizer, Pharmanet, Quintiles, Reliance life science,  Ranbaxy, Sristek, Siro Clinpharma, Synchron, Sanofi Aventis, Torrent pharma, Vimta labs,  Alembic, Asian Clinical Trials etc.


Job Prospects:

The initial remuneration for fresher’s is significantly based on their academic background, differing from year to year as well as from an organization to organization.

  • At a  fresher level, employment for pharmacy or life science graduate is Drug Safety Associate. They are primarily engaged in case of creation, reviewing for minimum safety information (MIS).
  • After 2-3 years of experience in that position and builds the required skill sets (Medical coding, narrative and scientific writing, a good understanding of medical terms and a basic understanding of regulatory affairs, ICH-GCP and compliance etc) he can go on to become a DSS (Drug Safety Scientist).
  • Individuals once having acquired a good narrative writing experience can pursue it on a larger frame, moving from individual cases like writing for PSUR(Periodic Safety Update Report) and PADER(Periodic Adverse Drug Experience Reports) and as well as becoming an Aggregate report scientist.
  • With an overall of 7-10 years, experience in this position individuals can easily become a Team lead or Team manager based on the company.
  • Lastly, individuals end up acquiring the position of a Director or Vice-President with an experience of 9-10 years.


Average Pay-scale

  • Fresher:  Rs 15,000-20,000
  • After 5 years: Rs 50,000-60,000
  • After 10 years: More than Rs 80,000-90,000


Conclusions:  Pharmacovigilance is a great employment option for pharmacy, medical and life science graduates. The main aim of Pharmacovigilance is to provide complete and clear information related to drug safety and various risks and benefits associated with them. Pharmacovigilance can help in providing information of unintended and severe adverse events which could not be provided by clinical trials involving in-vivo method. There are large numbers of pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries working in this sector. A pharmacy graduate directly join this profession, if a person wants to strengthen his/her resume, there are specialized diploma available like professional diploma in pharmacovigilance & pharmacoepidemiology, PG diploma in clinical research & pharmacovigilance, PG diploma in pharmacovigilance & regulatory affairs, PG diploma in pharmacovigilance & medical writing to grab good opportunities.Students who are willing and have decided to opt for pharmacy as their career are very fortunate as nowadays the scope of pharmacy has multiplied to tenfold. Therefore students desire to be a pharmacist have huge scope in this field. The only guiding principle for their success is getting admission in any prestigious pharmacy college. Sagar Institute of Pharmacy & Technology also known as SIPTec is one such renowned college situated in the city of lakes Bhopal which is emphasizing on imparting value based knowledge to its students. This makes SIPTec one of the preferred choice of the students.



Dr. Ashish Jain,

Professor, Pharmaceutics

Sagar Institute of Pharmacy and Technology (SIPTec), Bhopal.

SIPTec | Best Pharmacy College in Bhopal MP | Top Pharmacy Colleges in MP Bhopal

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