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Learn more about the duties, practice settings, typical workdays, and educational opportunities, as well as personal advice from pharmacists in this practice area.

What is neurology pharmacy?
Neurology pharmacy is a field devoted to managing medications used to treat neurologic diseases, neurologic sequelae from other conditions, and related co-morbidities.

Where does a neurology pharmacist work?
A neurology pharmacist may work in a hospital setting and care for patients with acute presentations of neurologic conditions such as seizures, ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke, status migrainosous, seizures, neurotrauma, myasthenia gravis, and demyelinating syndromes.  Many neurologic conditions are chronic and have no cure. A neurology pharmacist may also work in an outpatient neurology clinic to provide pharmacy services for the chronic management of medications in a diverse group of neurology subspecialties.

What does a typical workday look like? 
In a hospital setting, the neurology pharmacist works with the medical team by overseeing all medication orders for an admitted patient, not specific to only neurology medications. Neurology pharmacists are integral in ensuring safe and effective use of medications in a high-acuity setting. The inpatient neurology pharmacist is also integral in assisting with transitions of medication use upon admission and discharge.

In an outpatient clinic setting, a typical day is primarily focused on the medications used to treat neurologic conditions. There is significant variability between patients, and a neurology pharmacist is consulted by the physician and advanced provider team to manage these treatments. Neurology pharmacists provide education to patients on new medications or dose changes, monitor labs, assist with financial support enrollment, and proactively follow up with patients to monitor for adverse drug reactions, adherence, and drug interactions.

What educational opportunities are available for pharmacists in this area?

  • Multiple Sclerosis Certified Specialist (MSCS) is a certification for non-physician providers administered by the Consortium for MS Centers.
  • Board Certified Pharmacotherapy Specialist (BCPS) and Board Certified Ambulatory Care Pharmacist (BCACP) are certifications administered by the Board of Pharmacy Specialties and would be useful to any neurology pharmacist. BCPS would be helpful to those involved broadly in the care of neurology patients, especially in an inpatient setting, while BCACP would be helpful to those in an outpatient neurology setting.
  • Certified Specialty Pharmacist (CSP) is a certification administered by the National Association of Specialty Pharmacy and would be useful to a neurology pharmacist who works with specialty medications.

How can I learn more about this career path?

Member Career Profiles

Brent Sokola, Pharm.D., MS, MSCS
Clinical Pharmacist – Neurology
University of Kentucky Specialty Pharmacy

What interested you in pharmacy and this career path?

“Neurologic conditions can be severe in acute presentations and many have no cure requiring chronic management. They can have dramatic effects on a patient’s day-to-day life. My interest/motivation as a neurology pharmacist is to enable these patients to live a fulfilling life. This means weighing efficacy against side effects, setting realistic goals for medication therapy, and creating a care plan. Treatment for patients with neurologic conditions is highly individualized and pharmacists play an integral role in this process.”

What advice do you have for someone interested in this career field?

“Read, re-read, and then read some more. Neurology is a fast-moving field with new medications being approved almost daily. Most neurology pharmacists stay up-to-date with large trials in the major medical journals, but I would also advise to read the numerous journals specific to neurology. Neurologists and advanced practice providers will have a deep knowledge base within their sub-specialty and will expect their pharmacists to stay up-to-date as the field evolves. Know the history of treating neurologic conditions, but stay up-to-date as new literature is published.

Get experience with treating neurology patients in any way possible. Example may include selecting a clinical rotation as a student or resident on a neurology team. If you are already practicing, shadow a colleague in neurology on your day off or look for opportunities to cover weekends, holidays, and vacations for a neurology team pharmacist.”

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