If you're wondering how much pharmacists make, you've come to the right place. This article takes an in-depth look at job growth and salaries of pharmacists across the country over the next decade.
Pharmacists play a critical role in the healthcare field by being the responsible party for dispensing prescription medications to patients and providing guidance on the safe use of them. Although their primary role is the filling of prescriptions, they also can perform several other functions including giving flu shots and other vaccinations, working with insurance companies, managing records, and teaching other healthcare professionals about the proper use of particular medications for their patients.
If you're considering a job in healthcare, now is a great time to look into pharmaceuticals as a career. As with many other careers in the healthcare field, the demand for pharmacists is expected to rise over the next decade with the influx of new patients largely due to the Affordable Care Act and an increasingly-aging populace.
How much a pharmacist can make via salary can vary dramatically depending on several factors, including location, age, experience, education, skill-level, type of position and several others.
As represented in the graph below, pharmacists without any further specialization or outside income can expect to earn a median hourly wage of $56.96, or $120,950 per year.
However, you can directly influence this figure to increase your income well over six figures by going further in your education and specializing in a particular area, doing consulting work, or working as a contract or by being self-employed.
In order to become a pharmacist, students must pursue a either a bachelor's or preprofessional degree which will generally take 4 years of your time. This must be followed by the completion of a 4-year Pharm. D degree program and the required state license. In total, future pharmacists are looking at a minimum of 8 years of high education, and the costs that come along with it.
The return on investment for pharmacists will ultimately vary based on the individual, their circumstances, the school of choice, the location in which they work, whether they choose to work in corporate or private practices, and other factors.
Regardless of which path you choose, with a projected 150,000 new pharmacists being employed between 2016 and 2030, you can be confident that your job security will stay strong if you choose this path.
A major factor in determining what your salary may look like is the location in which you plan to work. However, this principle applies to nearly all occupations largely due to the varying cost-of-living rates across the country.
Employers must pay workers residing in states like Alaska more than those in Mississippi as are willing to pursue a career which requires years of education only to make a lackluster wage for their area.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics collects salary and employment data for nearly all positions, nationwide. The following table ranks all 50 states from the highest to lowest paying for pharmacists:
*Location quotients serve as a statistical representation of the concentration of a resource, like jobs, with a broader base area.