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About the Faculty

logoredThe Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine is a professional membership organisation and standard-setting body, with 1,500 members, who are practising or retired pharmaceutical physicians or those with a professional interest in the specialty.

Founded in 1989, we are a Faculty of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of the UK:

Although we have a strong affiliation with our parent Colleges we are self-governed and independent in both financial and policy terms. Read more about the history of the Faculty here.

The Faculty is a registered charity and therefore ultimately exists for the benefit of patients and the public. Charity number 1130573.

Pharmaceutical medicine is a medical specialty concerned with the discovery, development, evaluation, licensing and monitoring of medicines and the medical aspects of their marketing. The Faculty's members work in diverse environments; from front line clinical trials, to pharmaceutical marketing and medicines regulation.

Our mission is to advance the science and practice of pharmaceutical medicine by working to develop and maintain competence, ethics and integrity and the highest professional standards in the specialty for the benefit of the public. The Faculty seeks, through its activities, to bring about an improvement in the health of the public.

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Specialty Training

The Faculty sets the curriculum for the training programme 'Pharmaceutical Medicine Specialty Training (PMST)', which guides clinically trained doctors through the early stages of their careers in pharmaceutical medicine. On successful completion of PMST and passing the Diploma in Pharmaceutical Medicine exam (see below) trainees are entitled to apply to be on the General Medical Council (GMC) specialist register for pharmaceutical medicine. More information on PMST is available here.


The Faculty sets the syllabus for and administers four examinations:

  • Diploma in Pharmaceutical Medicine - an examination for physicians working in the pharmaceutical industry covering all aspects of pharmaceutical medicine as part of the PMST programme or as a stand alone examination
  • Diploma in Human Pharmacology - a two year programme and examination for physicians working in pharmaceutical medicine or allied field covering the knowledge and competencies required to serve as a principal investigator for human pharmacology studies of investigational medicinal products
  • Diploma in Experimental Therapeutics - a two year programme intended for physicians conducting Phase I/II studies predominantly in patients within their clinical specialty e.g. oncology, rheumatology, in a hospital clinical research facility.
  • Certificate in Human Pharmacology - a one year part time programme and examination for physicians, scientists and clinical research managers covering all aspects of human pharmacology studies of investigational medicinal products

Find out more on exams here


Medical revalidation was introduced in the United Kingdom in December 2012. The Faculty supports the need for pharmaceutical physicians, whose work has a major impact on patients, to hold a Licence to Practise.  The Faculty has developed specialty specific standards for revalidation and is the Designated Body for some of its members. Please find more information on our revalidation pages.

Policy and Partnerships

The Faculty is recognised as an authoritative voice on pharmaceutical medical issues. We frequently respond to external consultations from governmental and regulatory authorities on behalf of our members. We promote high ethical standards amongst our members and amongst the profession at large. The Faculty works closely with the Royal Colleges of Physicians and other medical royal colleges and many other organisations to advocate on behalf of our members. The Faculty is also represented on many external committees which enable us to ensure that opinions of our committees and members are heard in a wide variety of forums.

Find out more about our policy work, publications and partnerships here.