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MD needs advice

Hi guys:
I graduated medical school in 2006 and have decided that clinical medicine is not for me. I have a great deal of resarch experience and published papers and would love to work research full-time. The idea of being a CRA sounds perfect from the little that I know about it and helping move drugs through clinical trial stages is equally exciting.

Does anyone have any advice for me?
Is CRA/CRO the way to go? Are there any jobs available to me now or do I have to get certified?

Please help :)
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My Dad finished his residency and felt the same way. He went to law school and didn't like that either. Finally he ended up in the pharmaceutical industry. He began as a medical monitor and a few years Director of Clinical Field Operations, then he became a Sr. Director of drug regulatory affairs. He spent 10 years as VP of Drug Regulatory Affairs of a large corporation. I would say that you could follow a similar path minus the JD.
May 17, 2010 Solution by original poster
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Robert!
Thank you so much for your help.

The only acronym on that list that I recognize is FDA and you may have even been referring to a different meaning. 🙂

I can't tell you how much I appreciate your altruism.
Please feel free to email me directly if you ever hear of an opening or need something yourself that I might be able to help with.

MD

*********** (dot) com
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Feb 26, 2010 Solution by original poster
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PI- primary investigator
SI- subinvestigator

these are physician-level jobs in clinical research. you perform patient evaluations, oversee the conduct of nurses in the trial, ensure the investigational plan is being done properly, ensure the patient is consent properly and that all their questions have been answered, etc., etc.

i would contact a SMO, physicians doing clinical research or universities directly. you won't find posting on the job boards for this job.

if u are interested in medical writing contact a CRO (contract research organization) in your area. i wouldn't be searching craig's list- i would try more reputable job sites and apply to pharm and research companies directly through their website.

since your knowledge of basic abbrv. in the industry is lacking, i would join a professional organization like ACRP to get you knowledge up so you can get thru an interview. at minimum you'll need to know what each of stand for and the meaning of each to just get thru an interview:
ANDA
ADR
AE
BLA
CRA
CRC
CRO
CRF
CFR
CTA
DSMB
FDA
GCP
IND
ICH
IDE
IRB
NDA
PI
PMK
SI
SMO
SMV sometimes called RMV or IMV

You may want to check out ACRP's wiki glossary to get a hold on these terms
Feb 26, 2010 Solution by original poster
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Thank you guys for your input.
How would I go about looking for these types of jobs?
I have put together my CV but have been looking on craigslist for these keywords and cannot find any.

Excuse my ignorance but what do PI and SI stand for.

Also, how would I get a job in medical writing.

Regards
MD
Feb 25, 2010 Solution by original poster
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Yes i truly agree with Robert.U can start as a PI or Sub PI.If u want u can do some course of CRA n try for job as there r very few entry level jobs for CRA.I worked as a Entry level CRA for Clinsys in India as now since iam in canada so i upgraded.I also feel that u should try in medical writing.
Feb 25, 2010 Solution by original poster
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you do not need to get any sort of certification to be a CRA, however, starting off in clinical research right now as a monitor isn't the easiest industry to choose since we've been hit hard by the bad economy.

additionally, CRA is not an entry-level position- you'd have to start out as a CRC (nurse-level) or CTA to gain the expirience to hope to move up to a CRA. i doubt the low starting pay for these positions (30k) and the starting salary for CRAs (40-50k for your first year) will be very attractive to a physician.

if i were you, i would hook up with a university and use your medical degree as a PI or SI. i would also consider protocol writing or doing consult work as a medical monitor
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Feb 24, 2010 Solution by original poster
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Hi guys:
I graduated medical school in 2006 and have decided that clinical medicine is not for me. I have a great deal of resarch experience and published papers and would love to work research full-time. The idea of being a CRA sounds perfect from the little that I know about it and helping move drugs through clinical trial stages is equally exciting.

Does anyone have any advice for me?
Is CRA/CRO the way to go? Are there any jobs available to me now or do I have to get certified?

Please help 🙂
Feb 23, 2010 Solution by original poster