Drug Safety Director

Verify a drug's safety by monitoring its effects on patients.
picture of Drug Safety Director

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$89,000 – $155,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Drug Safety Directors do?

In today’s world, there seems to be a medicine for everything. From vitamins to new-wave cancer drugs, pharmaceuticals offer relief from ailments ranging from headaches to multiple sclerosis.

But sometimes, bad side effects hitch a ride on the feel-good train. And often, those side effects are worse than the illness the medicine treats. That’s where Drug Safety Directors come in. They plan and implement drug safety research to ensure that drugs are safe to use, both before and after they hit the market.

As a Drug Safety Director, you’re a liaison between the medical consumer and the pharmaceutical company or governmental agency that sponsors the drugs. Your main role as a Drug Safety Director is to make sure everyone else does their job. That means supervising the Drug Safety Physicians, Drug Safety Nurses, and Drug Safety Specialists who collect and report data pertaining to drug safety.

What exactly is drug safety? It’s the process of monitoring side effects from medications. During clinical trials, many side effects emerge, as evidenced by the sprawling warnings on bottles and at the end of television commercials. When the drug hits the market and patients start reporting adverse side effects, your team follows up and reports them to the pharmaceutical company for further consideration.

While you supervise staff, clinical trials, and the safety of patients, you also spend a significant amount of time organizing all that data into neat reports for your bosses. In the end, you play a big part in deciding whether a medicine is safe enough to be on the market.

Should I be a Drug Safety Director?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.

  • Also known as: Drug Safety and Pharmacovigilance Director

    How to become a Drug Safety Director

    Most Drug Safety Directors have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:iij9ni&chl=no+college+%288%25%29|certificate+%288%25%29|associate%27s+%289%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2856%25%29|master%27s+%2812%25%29|doctorate+%288%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,8,56
    Schools close to

    Careers Similar to Drug Safety Director