Pharmacoepidemiologist

Determine the side effects of drugs.
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Quick Stats


Salary Range
$42,000 – $98,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Pharmacoepidemiologists do?

Over the years, medical drugs that prevent or cure illnesses have done a lot to improve the lives of people. However, drugs aren’t perfect. Occasionally, their adverse effects can worsen the condition of patients, or even kill them.

That’s why Pharmacoepidemiologists are really important. Pharmacoepidemiologists look at drugs to see how safe and effective they are.

Epidemiology, no matter what specialization, falls under the field of public health, and pharmacoepidemiology is no different. As a Pharmacoepidemiologist, you look at the ways different medicines affect the general population. You study the drugs’ side effects, as well as their overall safety. You also try and connect different negative reactions to see if there’s a certain type of person, group, or age range who shouldn’t take the drug, and if there are activities that a person shouldn’t do while taking it.

In order to find out the answers to these types of questions, you apply the scientific method. You observe problems, come up with hypotheses about why they happen or how they can be avoided, and then test your theory. You might research a hypothesis through patient interviews, conduct clinical trials, read client charts, or research previous experiments.

The drugs you test can range from those that fight cancer to those that help with depression. You can also look at different medical procedures, devices, and vaccines. In other words, if it’s anything medical that could be more harmful than effective, it should fall under your scrutiny.


Should I be a Pharmacoepidemiologist?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Flexible: You're open to change and think variety is the spice of life.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.

  • How to become a Pharmacoepidemiologist

    Most Pharmacoepidemiologists have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaac9b&chl=|||bachelor%27s+%283%25%29|master%27s+%2867%25%29|doctorate+%2830%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,67
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