Practicing medicine in a clinical setting is what most of us think of when the topic of physician jobs comes up. That’s to be expected, given what most of us know about doctors and what they do. But not all physicians are clinicians. Some work in positions that have nothing to do with seeing patients and diagnosing illnesses.
The pharmaceutical sector is well known for hiring physicians to fill non-clinical positions. Perhaps you are a clinician looking to get out of daily practice and into something less demanding. Perhaps you are a locum tenens clinician hoping to find a permanent position that is a bit different. In either case, check out the following five non-clinical physician jobs common to the pharmaceutical industry.
1. Advisory Board Physician
Pharmaceutical companies rely heavily on physicians to help direct what they do. The advisory board physicians they employ are given numerous tasks, depending on what the employer wants to accomplish. For example, many advisory board physicians work with management to determine what kinds of drugs or medical devices are worth pursuing in light of strict FDA regulations.
Advisory board physicians often find themselves involved in clinical trials as well. Whether they build the trials or study the data upon completion, these doctors are indispensable in determining the progress of a new drug or treatment being pursued by their employers.
2. Research Physicians
Advisory board jobs are hard to get because they are limited in nature and typically given to those who are tops in their field. But physicians still looking to play an important role in developing new therapies can take research jobs instead.
While advisory board physicians may establish the parameters for clinical trial, someone has to actually conduct the trial. That’s the job of the research physician. Research physicians administer clinical trials and record the data those trials produce. They may also be involved in analyzing the data at the conclusion of a study.
3. Pharmaceutical Marketing
Pharmaceutical companies have their own marketing departments responsible for getting the word out about new products. Often times marketing departments are led by physicians who have a clear understanding of how said products work and how to market them without straying outside of current regulations. This is a crucial role for any pharmaceutical company.
Physicians who hold such positions are generally responsible for marketing compliance. They look over all marketing materials before such materials are approved. They might even write marketing copy that needs to utilize specific language for compliance reasons.
4. Medical Public Relations
Last but not least is medical public relations. Pharmaceutical companies will hire physicians to represent them via blog posts, news articles, and live speaking engagements. These doctors become the public face of the companies that employ them. Though the job may seem unsavory to some on the outside, it is really not. Public relations in the pharmaceutical industry is all about getting the right message out there using the right words and the most effective media.
A physician employed in a public-relations capacity may go on television to talk about a new drug or medical device. She may give news interviews in which she comments on pending FDA approval. She may write blog posts for her employer’s website or factual reports for medical journal publication.
The fact of the matter is that there are quite a few different non-clinical jobs physicians can take. Being a physician doesn’t necessarily mean spending 30 or 40 years in clinical practice. There are other options, including the different kinds of jobs found in the pharmaceutical industry. Do any of them interest you?