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Pharmacy School - Victoria International College, Malaysia

Course Title:

Pharmacy(PA 9518)

Course Overview:


Study Mode:

Full time - 3 years

Commencement:

 April,  May & August

Entry Requirements:

SPM / UEC with three credits
STPM
Diploma / Pre-University or equivalent qualification

Course Details:

  • Human Anatomy & Physiology
  • Pharmaceutics
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Skills
  • Introduction to Pharmacy
  • Pharmacology
  • Social Pharmacy
  • Mathematic and Statistic
  • English Proficiency
  • Pharmacology III (Bone and Joint, Neurological and Psychiatric disorder)
  • Life Sciences
  • Hospital Pharmacy
  • Nutraceuticals
  • Pharmaceutical Microbiology
  • Extemporaneous dispensing
  • Extemporaneous dispensing
  • Antimicrobial and Chemotherapy
  • Pharmacy Management
  • Community Pharmacy
  • Hospital Pharmacy Training

 

Pharmacy


The pharmacy course at Victoria International College is designed to put you on the path to becoming a proficient pharmacist. Our course is comprehensive and brings together an enriching curriculum, expert faculty and advanced infrastructure that will help you reach your full potential in the area of pharmacy. The course has been developed to ensure that students who have a keen interest in serving in the health-care field get to hone the skills required to join it. When you join the field, you will have a very important role to play in enhancing the quality of others’ lives.

A healthcare profession, pharmacy combines chemical and health sciences so that pharmaceutical drugs can be used effectively and safely. The scope of the field extends to making and dispensing medicinal drugs. Some of the services that have been included as part of its scope are providing clinical services, giving information about drugs and carrying out reviews of medicines to ensure that they are appropriate and safe. This makes pharmacists experts in the area of drug therapy. Pharmacists are key to ensuring that medicines are optimized to give patients positive outcomes.

Core Disciplines in Pharmacy

Pharmacy has three core disciplines which are:

  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Pharmacy Practice
  • Medicinal Chemistry


In pharmaceutics, the main focus is converting a chemical entity that is new, to a medicinal drug that can be used safely and effectively by people. Pharmaceutical chemistry and medicinal chemistry are disciplines which deal with the designing, synthesizing and developing of a market for medicinal drugs.

Through the course, you will learn about the best practices in promoting health, developing treatments for minor illnesses and managing information about health. You will also get to develop skills that will help you make use of the knowledge you develop in these areas. Through pharmacy practice, students get to develop in their professional roles. The methods to manage a pharmacy and take care of administrative duties are some of the aspects that will be learnt through this area of study.

Some of the areas of practice that will be the focus of the course at Victoria International College are:

  • Management of disease-state
  • Prevention of drug abuse
  • Caring for patients
  • Developing communication skills
  • Discovery and assessment of drugs
    Professional development


One of the most important aspects that students will learn about is identifying if patients are having problems with proper drug usage and taking measures to help them.

Subjects in Pharmacy

During the first few semesters of the course, students will be taught basic sciences, which form the core subjects. Some of these are molecular genetics, nutrition, pharmacology, physiology, biochemistry, mathematics, microbiology, chemistry and anatomy. In addition, students will have to learn pharmaceutical sciences like pharmaco-kinetics, pharmaceuticals, pharmaceutical microbiology and medicinal and organic agents. The two science disciplines complement each other and form a solid base on which students can develop a good understanding of the field of pharmaceutical sciences.

Through the course, you will be introduced to pharmaceuticals. The responsibilities and roles of a pharmacist, the scope of his job and the future of the field will also be discussed. Some of the specialist subjects that will be a part of the curriculum are pharmacy residency, pharmacy practice, therapeutics and professional practice.

You will also study the delivery of drugs to specific sites in the body. Other areas you will learn about are the discovery, analysis and synthesis of drugs derived from genetic technology and plants. The mechanism of how drugs act within the body will also be a part of the course.

Organic and Biological Chemistry: An interesting area in which the basics of chemistry and biological molecules are studied is organic and biological chemistry. This will form the foundation on other subjects will be taught. So, it is important that students understand and make the most of the classes on this subject.

Drug Delivery: Through the subject on drug delivery, students will gain insight into the principles underlying the optimizing of delivery of drugs. Determining the optimal amount of drugs that should be delivered at a target site in the body is one of the core objectives in pharmacy.

For this, students should have an understanding of the relationship between the physico-chemical and chemical attributes of a drug, the right formula for it and the response that is desirable. They should also know about biological environments and the release traits of the drugs in them.

Molecular Genetics: One of the key areas that will be taught to students in this course is molecular genetics. It has a big role to play in helping them understand the role genetics plays in people’s responses to drugs and that of genomics in the development of new drugs. Molecular genetics is a field that combines genetics and biology to focus on the function and integral structure of genes.

Another area that molecular genetics pays attention to is genetic mutations which can result in diseases. The extent to which mutations are passed on and the role they play are also studied in this. When combined with pharmacology, the subject will throw light on how variation in genetic characteristics can influence drug designs and treatments.

Pharmaceutical Microbiology: A branch of industrial microbiology, pharmaceutical microbiology is a subject that focuses on the best measures that can be used to ensure that that the amount of microbes in medicines is not at a harmful level. This area of focus is called drug safety. Antimicrobial activity is another area. Through this, students will learn about the various ways a medicine will react if it is contaminated. Tests that can be done to determine the reactions are also taught.

Pharmacology: The action of drugs is studied in pharmacology. The interactions between chemicals – that have an effect on biochemical functions that are normal or abnormal – and a living organism, are looked at in detail through this area of study. Substances that have medicinal qualities are known as pharmaceuticals. Drug properties and composition, toxicology, interactions, medical applications and therapy are a few other areas of focus.

Pharmaco-Kinetics: One of the branches of pharmacology is pharmaco-kinetics. It looks at the pathway of the medicines, toxins and hormones that are administered to a person. The absorption and distribution mechanisms of a drug, the rate at which it acts, the period for which the effect lasts, how the chemical composition of it changes within the body and the routes of excreting and the effects of its metabolites are also studied.

Nutrition: Just as drugs administered externally have an effect on the body, nutrients provided the same way too have an impact. Sometimes, patients have to be given nutritional support and pharmacists are responsible for ensuring that optimal nutritional levels are maintained or restored. For this, they should know about the different types of nutritional supplements and the effect they have on a person. The treatment that a patient is given will have to be modified or designed by taking into consideration his requirements.

Drug Discovery and Development: The process of designing or finding out a new drug is called drug discovery. This is an area of study that is growing quite fast as there is an increasing demand for drugs that are fast-acting and capable of giving the best results. With an increase in the understanding of how diseases can be controlled at their molecular level, it has become easier to identify compounds that will help counter them. This is crucial to designing drug candidates.

One of the areas in which students of pharmacy are likely to be involved is drug development and analysis. This is the process of introducing a medicine to the market following the identification of a lead compound for it. Some of the steps involved in this are research at the preclinical level and clinical trials.

Areas of study, like drug delivery, pharmacology and molecular genetics are those in which students can specialize after they finish their course in pharmacy. They can take up specialization courses that will help them develop their understanding and skills in these areas.

Career Prospects for Pharmacists

Currently, in Malaysia, there is a shortage of pharmacists. The pharmacist to people ratio is 1:5,000. This is less than the recommended standard by the World Health Organization (WHO). According to WHO, to provide the best health care, the ratio should be 1:2,000. The shortage is forcing doctors in Malaysia to take on the role of pharmacists. This situation can be changed for the better with more students taking up courses in pharmacy.

Pharmacists have a very important role to play in every society. In many parts of the world, pharmacists are the most trusted professionals in the health industry.

Patient-care: As they are a part of health care team, pharmacists get the chance to provide care to patients. This can be a very rewarding experience for those interested in being involved in the direct care of patients.

Drug therapy: Pharmacists will have to find out problems related to drug therapy and come up with solutions to deal with and prevent the issues in future. Some of the tasks that pharmacists will have to under-take on a daily basis are – making a note of the medication history of patients and developing drug therapy goals. They have to develop specialized services for managing diseases like asthma and diabetes. Pharmacists are also generally involved in creating drug therapies for areas like IV nutrition and oncology.

Helping with the use of the right non-prescription drugs: Sometimes patients require non-prescription medicines, which pharmacists can help select. With these, the patients will be able to get the most from the medicines that have been prescribed to them. This way, pharmacists play a big role in ensuring the safe use of medicines.

Sharing information and making recommendations: In addition, they also share information that they have objectively evaluated, with doctors and patients. Pharmacists are qualified to make recommendations to doctors and nurses. They help patients understand the benefits of the medicines that have been prescribed to them.

Pharmacy technicians: Another important role that pharmacists can fill is that of pharmacy technicians. They carry out the tasks that support a licensed pharmacist and other professionals in the health care department. They are generally approachable and easily accessible. People can most often walk into a pharmaceutical store and request the prescription drugs they want. In addition, some people also ask pharmacists opinions about the benefits and side-effects of a drug.

Settings for Work

The settings in which you will get to work when you get your degree in pharmacy are hospitals, government agencies, companies that manufacture pharmaceutical drugs and health insurance agencies. In universities and colleges, pharmacists work in research. Some also teach and dispense drugs in on-campus health stores.

One of the most challenging and motivating environments is a hospital pharmacy. The clinical medicine management requirements for hospitals are likely to be quite extensive. The benefit of working in such an environment is that you will learn quite a lot in a short span of time.

Some of the places where pharmacy technicians are required are at drug stores and departments of grocery stores and public health agencies. Hospitals and other health care facilities that have pharmacies will need pharmacy technicians. The duties of the technicians include dispensing medical devices and prescription drugs to patients. In addition, they will also have to provide information on how to use them.

A few facilities or organizations also require pharmacy technicians to carry out administrative duties like reviewing patients’ requests for medicines. They ensure that the patients get the right medicines and provide vital information like the time when the medicines should be taken.

Several pharmacists take up jobs in the pharmaceutical industry. Depending on their role, they will develop, produce or improve medicinal drugs. They will also get to test and carry out quality checks on the drugs. Some are also engaged in the sales and marketing of the drugs. This is an important role that pharmacists take on.

Their knowledge of drugs will help doctors and hospitals choose the best medicines for their patients. Pharmacists provide information on the dosages of medicines and their interactions and effects with other drugs. This can be invaluable information, as it will allow doctors, who treat patients on multiple drugs, decide the medicines on the basis of how the medicines interact.

 

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Admission Office:
Tel: +603-40431168
Fax: +603-40438168

468-7B, 3rd Mile, Jalan Ipoh, 51200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
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