Meet Aimy Palawooth, Clinical Affairs Manager, Based in Thailand

Aimy Palawooth was in her third year working for a pharmaceutical company in Bangkok, Thailand, when a friend invited her to apply to an organization called FHI 360. “She called me and said, ‘Hey Aimy, I found this job, and I don’t think it’s suitable for me, but I think this is you,’” said Palawooth.
After perusing the FHI 360 job description online, she was intrigued. For Palawooth, the requirement of traveling more than 50% of the hours was one of the attractive benefits of the position, especially due to her location in Thailand.
“From Asia, travel to different countries is a bit far, so we aren’t able to get to places like Africa. We don’t usually have a chance to travel there,” she said. “If I didn’t decide to work for FHI Clinical or FHI 360, I would not have been able to go. Through working here, I have a chance to go to more rural and hard-to-reach areas, because we conduct clinical trials there,” she said.
Passion for all locations and participants
The travel benefit was not the only reason she fell in love with her position, which migrated to FHI Clinical when Global Research Services spun off from FHI 360 in 2019. “Our organization can help people,” she said. “Some people who don’t have a salary, who work every day for a daily wage, don’t have the money to go to the hospital or check up. When they live in a rural area, it is not easy to come to the city. When our organization works in rural areas, we give them more of a chance,” she said.
This can be life-saving for some participants. “When we have them join our study, we have a screening process,” she said. “We test if they can join the study and use blood tests or urine tests to check their liver and renal function. Sometimes, we can show participants conditions they might not have known they had.”
Palawooth is from a rural part of Thailand herself, which contributes to her interest and expertise in helping others located in similar areas. “I was born in the south of Thailand and lived there until I was 18 years old,” she said. “Later, I attended Mahidol University in Bangkok, where I completed both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in pharmaceutical technology.”
A career in pharmaceuticals
Because Palawooth graduated with her bachelor’s degree from a government-funded university, she was required to work at a government hospital for two years. She primarily worked in the manufacturing department. After three years at the hospital and in her second year of her master’s degree, another opportunity presented itself. “After attending my presentation on Thai herbal and industry, the Director of Research and Development Department at one of the top veterinary drug companies asked me to work with him. My supervisor told me to take it. So, I jumped into the private sector as a research pharmacist in 2005,” she said.
Fast forward to 2008, when Palawooth received the message from her friend about a job opening and began her career with FHI 360 as a clinical research associate (CRA): “This year will be my 14th year with the organization,” said Palawooth.
Identifying with FHI Clinical’s mission
From her years of experience with FHI Clinical, Palawooth has cultivated a better understanding of the company’s mission and purpose. “We help people. We give them the chance to access public health resources,” she said. “We specialize in minority groups — money is still important, but we are able to prioritize helping people above that. Working here [at FHI Clinical] has given me a lot of opportunities that larger CROs cannot give.”
As Palawooth helps support FHI Clinical’s mission, the company also uplifts Palawooth to live the life she loves. “My passion is happiness, and I’ve almost reached my goal,” she said. “FHI Clinical gave me an opportunity — a chance to go back home and take care of my dogs, chickens and my land. FHI Clinical changed my life; they gave me a chance to go back to my hometown and take care of my dad, who just turned 80,” she said.
When she’s home in Thungsong, Nakhon Si Thammara, Palawooth and her husband are responsible for four dogs, her husband’s five employees, a builder and forty chickens. In her free time, Palawooth enjoys walking in the rubber tree field and cooking dog treats and meals.

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