Pharmaceutical medicine over a period of time has evolved as a medical scientific discipline and is related to the discovery, development, evaluation, registration, monitoring and medical marketing strategies of medicines for the patients and community health. Knowledge and understanding the action of the drug in body, variability and limitation of therapy response, optimal use of therapy in clinical practice form the basis of the pharmaceutical medicines.
Study of pharmaceutical medicine revolves around the clinical testing of drugs, translation of potential new molecules into new drug entities (medicine), safety of research participants during the clinical trial phases, development of the safety profile of the medicine in trial, and establishing the benefit-risk balance. In addition to these aspects a thorough knowledge of pharamcoeconomics is required as well. Along with other medical specialities; pharmaceutical medicine has developed its own ethos and a distinct body primarily based on clinical science knowledge.
UK, Ireland, Switzerland and Mexico have already listed pharmaceutical medicine as a medical speciality. Although pharmaceutical medicine has well flourished in UK for over a period of 40years; it was officially recognized as a medical speciality only in the year 2002. In Latin America, Mexico was the first country to obtain official recognition of pharmaceutical medicine as medical speciality and the country has now reached a level of development that can reinforce and achieve regional as well as global leadership in pharmaceutical medicine. A specialist in pharmaceutical medicine shares common goals and aspirations with the pharmaceutical physicians. These specialists maintain the standards of practice and professionalism in competency, care and conduct applied to the work and growing public recognition and accountability. A pharmaceutical physician can develop his career as a clinical pharmacologist, clinical research physician, medical advisor or a drug safety physician and even can become self employed once experience is gained in this field. A number of different types of potential employers for specialists in pharmaceutical medicine include pharmaceutical companies, clinical research and drug regulatory organisations. In the UK, accreditation for this speciality is provided by Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicines of the Royal Colleges of Physicians, in order to achieve and ensure the practice of the highest standards for the benefit of patients.
Pharmaceutical medicine is an international medical discipline which involves the development of new medicine and making it available to global patient population. Pharmaceutical physicians are expected to work within the strict pharmaceutical legal and regulatory framework, along with ethical and professional medical governance codes. A new era of maturity and coalition of pharmaceutical medicine as a medical speciality is underway however it still has a long way to go. Pharmaceutical medicine continues to flourish as a vital part of future drug, biotechnological and device development.
James Lind Institute (JLI) offers an online program, ‘Advanced Postgraduate Diploma in Pharmaceutical Medicine’ for people who wish to make their career in the field of drug development and translational research.