Careers in Biomedical Science in India
Are you interested in biomedical science careers? If you are looking for an interesting field of study that remains largely unexplored and esoteric, then this is it! For though there is much hullabaloo about biomedical engineering in India, the study of biomedical science itself remains a rarity. It refers to the natural and life sciences applied domain, and is used for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of various human diseases. Related streams include pathology, human biology, cell and molecular biology, biomedical engineering, genetics, epidemiology, immunology, pharmacology, clinical, or applied chemistry.
This is a highly dynamic and ever-changing study program that gives the students the chance to become a part of exciting developments in the field of modern medicine. However, it will be wrong to consider it as an alternative to the study of medicine.
Career opportunities in Biomedical Science in India
Numerous opportunities exist for students pursuing a course in biomedical sciences in India. It is a vast, happening subject with great opportunities for laboratory work, management, research, education, and consultancy. Once you become qualified in the subject, you can work in the private sector or in the various national healthcare laboratories. Those who don't find themselves suitable for standard hospital careers may opt for health protection agencies, or work in forensic science departments and help catch a suspect perhaps! Attach yourself to international healthcare projects, go for voluntary work, get involved with product manufacturers, pharmaceutical industries, or veterinary services…your choices are immense.
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Eligibility criteria to study Biomedical Science
The first requirement when you want to pursue a career in biomedical sciences is a bachelor's degree. Those who want to get streamlined towards their preferred subject from the very beginning should consider a degree in pharmacology, molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry, or chemistry. Since all these streams are quite interrelated with each other, you can always change subjects, if required. Alternatively, you can go for a biomedical science bachelor's degree, biotechnology/biomedical engineering B.Tech., or B.Pharm, before pursuing an advanced course in Biomedical Science.
While various job opportunities wait for you once become a graduate in this field, for substantially good prospects you need a Master's Degree.
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The main work of biomedical scientists lies within the laboratory. They handle different biological samples, such as tissues, cells, blood with the help of pipettes, beakers, and test tubes, along with high-tech equipment and computers. Common responsibilities and the job profile of biomedical scientists are the following:
- Screening and testing of lifestyle diseases, such as cardiovascular issues, cancer, and diabetes, along with screening for Ebola, rubella, hepatitis, and other infectious diseases
- Development, discovery of treatments like medicines or drugs as therapeutic agents and vaccines as preventive measures
- Understanding, investigating disease progression, profile, and mechanisms
- Finding innovative, new, and effective means of disease detection, such as new biomarker discovery
Once you complete the related courses successfully, you can land various job roles, based upon your qualification. Absorption is possible in bioinstrumentation, pharmaceuticals, medical imaging, drug design, delivery, scientific R&D, health care, hospitals, medical equipment supply, and manufacture. With a good medical science degree, you may even gain a fast track entry into a medical college and start studying to be a doctor, in spite of having failed at the medical entrance examination before.
Biomedical research institutes and biotech companies in India will offer you a Rs. 1.2 lakh to Rs. 2.2 lakhs per annum salary at the beginning. However, a fresher may also claim a Rs. 3 lakh per annum salary in some cases. If you have a master's degree, you can expect anything between Rs. 1.8 lakhs to Rs. 3.2 lakhs per annum.
Junior research fellows, after qualifying the CSIR-NET examination, earn approximately Rs. 12,000 to Rs. 18,000 on a monthly basis. Similarly, as a senior research fellow, you can expect to earn Rs. 25,000 a month. Once you complete your Ph.D in India, which is generally within four to six years, you can go for research and teaching, to earn Rs. 4 3.2 lakhs - Rs. 6 lakhs per annum.
Naturally, biomedical science salary related to international jobs is much higher, especially when you will be earning in Euro or Dollars! Anyone who has a bachelor's or master's degree in the subject can hope to earn anything between € 24,000 and € 30,000 per annum or US$ 45,000 per annum.
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A number of institutes in India offer courses or degrees in Biomedical Science and the main ones include the following:
- Ambedkar Centre for Biomedical Research (ACBR), Delhi University: This institute has been admitting students to their M.Sc. - Ph.D. combined and M.Sc. Degree courses since 1998.
- Acharya Narendra Dev College, Delhi University: A Biomedical Science course has been available here since 1991and it is a much sought after one. The college offers bachelor's, M.Sc., and Ph.D. courses in the subject.
- Symbiosis School of Biomedical Sciences (SSBS): This institute in Pune offers academic programs as well as research opportunities to students interested in pursuing a career in this subject.