Hospital pharmacists play an integral role ensuring patients receive high quality medicine management, providing essential services including: medicine reconciliation, clinical review, patient counselling and efficient supply.

Hospital pharmacists provide drug information and advice to health professionals and the community as well as contributing to and conducting clinical trials of new or improved treatments.

Where do hospital pharmacists practice?

Hospital pharmacists work across public and private hospitals and in a range of innovative outreach and liaison services across community healthcare settings.

When should I see a hospital pharmacist?

Most patients will have their medicines reviewed by a hospital pharmacist upon hospital admission and during their time as an inpatient, and will speak to a hospital pharmacist at discharge.

What services do hospital pharmacists provide?

Hospital pharmacists offer a range of clinical services including preparing or supervising the dispensing of medicines in all forms, consulting patients on how their medicines are to be taken or used in the safest and most effective way and advising members of the public and other health professionals about medicines (both prescription and over-the-counter medicines), including appropriate selection, dosage and drug interactions, therapeutic effects and potential side effects.

Over the course of their career, many hospital pharmacists specialise to provide advanced services within one or more of 26 specialty practice areas identified by SHPA, including: general medicine, critical care, oncology and haematology, emergency medicine, cardiology, clinical trials, electronic medicines management, geriatric medicine, infectious diseases, medication safety, medicine information, mental health, nephrology, neurology, paediatrics and neonatology, pain management, palliative care, primary care, respiratory, surgery, rural and remote practice, and women’s and newborn medicine.

How are pharmacists qualified?

In order to practice, pharmacists are required to complete:

  • a Pharmacy Board of Australia-approved pharmacy degree
  • an intern training program, a written examination and an oral examination
  • 1,824 hours of Pharmacy Board of Australia-approved supervised practice
  • continuing professional development (CPD) each year as set out by the Pharmacy Board of Australia.

Further information

For more detailed information about innovation, workforce development and ongoing education in hospital pharmacy, visit the Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia website.

 Find a hospital pharmacy

Many hospital services are listed in the National Health Services Directory.