Concerns related to the safety of marketed medicines have increased the importance of pharmacoepidemiology. Pharmacoepidemiology is a growing discipline that applies epidemiological techniques to study drug usage in a large population. It involves application of epidemiological methods to medicines, vaccines and cell-based or biological treatments.
What is Pharmacoepidemiology
Pharmacoepidemiology study evaluates drug exposure over time by combining the interest of pharmacology and epidemiology. Pharmacoepidemiology bridges science utilization of clinical pharmacology, epidemiology studies and adverse effects of drugs in large populations. Pharmacology includes pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic study of medications that allows predicting the effect of a drug in patients. Epidemiology involves the study of the factors used to determine the distribution and occurrence of a disease in a population. Epidemiologists study specific risk factors responsible for a disease among residents in a given area. Epidemiology is divided into infectious and chronic disease epidemiology, wherein chronic disease epidemiology is more dependent on complex sampling and statistical methods.
Pharmacoepidemiology concentrates on patient outcomes from therapeutics by applying clinical epidemiology methods to understand the determinants of beneficial and adverse drug effects, clinical effects of drug-to-drug interactions, effects of genetic variation on drugs, duration-response relationships and the non-adherence effects of medications. It provides a probable estimate of beneficial and adverse effects of a drug in a large population. Pharmacoepidemiology involves continual monitoring of unwanted or adverse effects among population and other safety concerns arising in relation to drugs available in the market. Pharmacoepidemiology also involves conducting and evaluating programmatic efforts to improve medical use in a population. A pharmacoepidemiologist applies epidemiology principles and methods to study the effects of various medications in a human population. Pharmacoepidemilogy implemented with pharmacovigilance system can successfully improve the use of drugs at discovering or post-marketing phase and prevent adverse effects during general public use.
Courses and Job opportunities in Pharmacoepidemiology
Pharmacoepidemiology employs quantitative and qualitative methods to measure phenomena of drug utilization and patient morbidity or mortality at population level. Specialized courses provide the knowledge and skill set to design, conceive and conduct studies that evaluate and describe the use and effects of medical technology, pharmaceutical products and related services among human population. It focuses on offering strong methodological understanding of observational research methods and applications in clinical studies and translational clinical science. Clinicians lacking adequate formal training essential in research discovery and scientific framework in everyday clinical practice can opt for such courses. Professionals from non-clinical but strong methodological background can pursue formal training in epidemiology and degree courses that specialize in pharmaceutical evaluation.
Graduates acquire a range of effective disciplinary and technical competencies in inferential statistics, research design and measurement, research result communication, research evaluation and ethics, behavioural issues surrounding medication use, healthcare delivery and medication system. Specialization in pharmacoepidemiology enables individuals to conduct, evaluate and develop pharmacovigilance programs for drug safety or comparative effectiveness and drug utilization studies. Concentration or specialization in pharmacoepidemiology provides individuals with the credentials to apply for entry or mid-level positions in contract research and government organizations, pharmaceutical companies, academic institutes and clinical research units.
Online Course at JLI
James Lind Institute (JLI) provides an online program – Professional Diploma in Pharmacovigilance & Pharmacoepidemiology for better career prospects.
For more information please visit: www.jli.edu.in