INTRODUCTION

As deregulation in all professions accelerates world-wide, the question has been raised that:

“If there was NO legal requirement that the pharmaceutical industry employs pharmacists in specific job functions; would the pharmaceutical industry employ pharmacists?”

In other words, does employing a pharmacist in the pharmaceutical industry add value to the industry (or is it a carry-over from historical practices)?

For example:
a.       in Europe in order to release a batch of product to market, only a 
          Qualified Person (QP) or a Responsible Person (RP) can legally perform
          the function; in many European countries only pharmacists can be QPs;
b.       in India only pharmacists can be production supervisors in industry;
c.       In the United States there is no legal/regulatory requirement to employ
          pharmacists in the pharmaceutical industry, it is very rare to find a
          pharmacist employed in the pharmaceutical industry.

To gain insight into current legal/regulatory requirements for employing pharmacists by the pharmaceutical industry, and potential future trends, we are seeking your assistance to complete the below survey. This will help us assess the current and future role of pharmacists in the pharmaceutical industry, and highlight future educational needs if the pharmacist is to, or should, retain a role in the pharmaceutical industry.

The objective of this survey is to ultimately produce a document for distribution to human resource departments in the pharmaceutical industry, as well as to university careers departments, explaining how the education of a pharmacist can bring added value to the pharmaceutical industry. All responses to this survey will be anonymized.

Your assistance with this project is most appreciated. The survey should take about 10 minutes to complete.

* 1. In what country do you work?

* 2. In which country did you receive your Bachelor's degree (or equivalent)?

* 3. In your country are there any job functions mandated by law, regulations, or professional organizations that are restricted to, or can only be performed by, a pharmacist - please list  the job title(s) that can only be performed by pharmacists? (this question must be answered, even if the answer is N/A)

* 4. In your country is there a trend to deregulate the pharmaceutical profession, and open jobs previously restricted to pharmacists, to others? (e.g. moving drugs from pharmacy-only sales to general sales, allowing remote [tele-medicine] dispensing of medications)

* 5. In what industry/area do you currently primarily work?

* 6. Based on your university training, what is your professional background?

* 7. Do you work in, or around, any aspect of the pharmaceutical industry?

* 8. If you work in, or around, the pharmaceutical industry, in what area do you primarily work?

* 9. What studies from your university (tertiary) education has proven to be the MOST USEFUL to you to perform your current job function? (this question must be answered, even if the answer is N/A)

* 10. What studies from your university (tertiary) education has proven to be the LEAST HELPFUL to you to perform your current job function (list up to three topics)? (this question must be answered, even if the answer is N/A)

* 11. What studies did you NOT RECEIVE in your university (tertiary) education that would have been most helpful to you to perform your current job function (list up to three topics)? (this question must be answered, even if the answer is N/A)

* 12. Assuming that there were no legal requirement to do so, what function(s) in the pharmaceutical industry, if any, do you believe CAN ONLY (or best) be performed by a pharmacist. (this question must be answered, even if the answer is N/A)
For example: If you say that QC laboratory management needs to be restricted to a pharmacist; why could this function not be performed better by a person with a Masters degree in Analytical Chemistry?

* 13. If there was no legal requirement in your country that this position be performed by a pharmacist (e.g. Qualified/Responsible Person - QP/RP); would you have given the same answer?

* 14. In your country, what do you see as the trend in pharmacy education at university?

* 15. In your opinion, does employing a pharmacist in industry, add value to the company? (this question must be answered, even if the answer is N/A)

* 16. Do you have any other insights you'd like to provide on this topic?

* 17. This survey is anonymous, and all responses will be aggregated. However in the event that your response needs clarification, would you please share your email address with us. Thank you.

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