A transition from the BPharm to the PharmD degree in five selected countries

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Education, Pharmacy, Schools, Pharmacy, Students, Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Services, Clinical Competence, Curriculum, Program Development, United States, Japan, Republic of Korea, Pakistan, Thailand


This review focuses on the studies and opinions around issues of transition from the BPharm to the PharmD degree in the U.S., Japan, South Korea, Pakistan and Thailand.

The transition to the clinically orientated PharmD degree in many countries was seen to be a means of developing the profession. However, some countries have both clinically-oriented and pharmaceutical sciences-oriented PharmD programme that are designed to meet the needs of their countries. Each country created a different process to handle the transition to an all-PharmD programme, but mostly had the process of school accreditation mandated by the regulatory bodies. The main barrier to the transition in most of the countries was the issue of educational quality. A set of indicators is needed to measure and monitor the impact/outcome of the PharmD degree.

Each country has different needs due to the different contexts of health care systems and the scope of pharmacy practice. In order to increase their chances of benefiting from the new programme, academic leaders should critically assess their countries’ needs before deciding to adopt a PharmD programme.

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