Drug Safety also known as Pharmacovigilance (common use of abbreviation PV or PVG) is the science of collecting, monitoring, researching, assessing and evaluating information from healthcare providers and patients on the adverse effects of medications, biological products, herbalism and traditional medicines. Drug Safety is therefore an essential part of each organization developing and manufacturing any type of medication or biological product as PVG presence gives us the opportunity to identify new information about hazards associated with medicines and preventing harm to patients. How to get into Drug Safety/ Pharmacovigilance
As a Drug Safety / Pharmacovigilance professional you can take on positions in various companies including Pharmaceuticals, Clinical Research Organisations and Biotech. Pharmacovigilance is an expanding area, primarily due to an increase in regulation and product withdraws based on safety concerns. In order to get into the industry the more skills you have the better, you will always be competing against people with similar skills and degrees. It is of great importance to be able to stand out in a crowd as well to be able to demonstrate that you have used these skills in the past. Within Drug Safety particularly there are specific master degree programmes and courses in Pharmacovigilance that would obviously stand you in good stead as well as this may also be advantageous to gain work experience in a pharmaceutical company, this could be carried out by volunteering or a summer job. Positions within Drug Safety / Pharmacovigilance
It is important to remember that different companies use different job titles for their Drug Safety / Pharmacovigilance positions and therefore it is always good to rely with the recruiter first and make sure that the role you are interested in matches with your experience and background.
Once you have gained some industry experience you can develop very quickly in the field to more senior positions. Working at associate level (e.g. Drug Safety Scientist, Drug Safety Officer) is the moment when you learn in a short time and you gain a wide variety of new skills very quickly. You can then progress to senior level roles where you mentor your less experienced colleagues but also keep gaining more experience yourself. In few years time you can very easily find yourself working as Manager or Director in one of the leading companies within the industry and therefore don’t give up looking for a job in the industry because when you get one it’s very rewarding!
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