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Clinical pharmacology and therapeutics

Clinical pharmacology is a sub-specialty of general medicine and physicians who specialise in it are experts in the effectiveness, safety and cost effectiveness of drug treatment.

Most pharmacologists work within the framework of teaching hospitals and so a substantial part of their work involves teaching others the elements of good therapeutics. They are also commonly involved in research on the effects of drugs on patients and often run clinics in areas of medicine where therapeutics is important - for example, hypertension, cardiovascular medicine or epilepsy. Because the general expertise is widely sought after, clinical pharmacologists often find themselves members of drug and therapeutics committees, advisers to health authorities or sitting on regional or national committees that consider prescribing.

Personal qualities should include:

  • Ability to co-operate with colleagues in a wide range of clinical and non-clinical disciplines
  • An interest in therapeutics
  • A desire to carry out drug related research
  • Knowledge of statistics and a good grasp of the methods used to evaluate evidence in medicine

Further information

For further information on this specialty, please contact:

Royal College of Physicians
11 St Andrews Place
Regents Park

Tel: 0207 935 1174
Website: www.rcplondon.ac.uk
Education: education@rcplondon.ac.uk
International office: international@rcplondon.ac.uk
Other enquiries: visit website for appropriate email addresses

More information can also be found on the Medical Careers website under the 'medicine' link of the specialty pages list.