The state government of Andhra Pradesh is planning to discontinue Pharma.D course for three years due to poor job opportunities in the sector. Students who graduated with a Pharma.D degree are struggling to find a job. The course, which was launched with much hype in 2008, has started to lose its allure due to poor job opportunities after graduating from college. On the other hand, the state government does not want to bear the burden of fee reimbursement to students pursuing Pharma.D course anymore.
The USA and other major countries launched pharma.D course so that students with Doctor of Pharmacy degree can practice pharmacy in other countries, specifically the USA where there is more scope for the employment. Similarly, western countries appoint Drug Therapeutics Committees to formulate drugs for all ailments and diseases. The committees include nurses, clinical pharmacists and doctors to chart out the standard prescription for each disease they treat in the hospital and the process to administer the drugs. Therefore, the scope for employment is high for graduates with Pharma.D degree.
Since not all the Pharma.D graduates could find employment abroad, the Indian government has to create a sufficient number of jobs to Pharma.D graduates. However, the government did not show much interest in creating posts of clinical pharmacists in hospitals and PHCs (Primary Healthcare Centres) in India.
According to popular pharma companies, Pharma.D graduates lack employment opportunities, as they do not study Chemistry. Therefore, these companies prefer B.Pharma graduates.
In Andhra Pradesh, 60 colleges offer 1,800 seats in Pharma.D course. B.Pharma graduates can also take up Pharma.D course in lateral entry mode for which 1,000 additional seats are created. Most colleges charge Rs. 68,000 to Rs. 1,25,000 per annum to six-year Pharma.D course. State government reimburses the fee to students belonging to reserved and economically backward categories.
Every year, only 20% Pharma.D graduates are able to settle in jobs. Most of them are working as Assistant Professors and Pharmacists Teaching Assistants. Recently, Pharma.D graduates staged a protest demanding the creation of clinical pharmacists’ posts.
Already, the Telangana government ordered State Council for Higher Education not to include Pharma.D course in TS EAMCET 2019. The government ordered the officials to submit a report on the placements of already passed out batches. The final decision regarding the reintroduction of Pharma.D course will be taken after analysing the placement report.
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