How Much Do Pharmacists Make?

In Pharmacist, Salary
October 25, 2016

How Much Do Pharmacists Make?

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 Do Pharmacists Make?

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.

Pharmacist Salary Graph

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.

Return on Investment for Pharmacists

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.

Best States for Pharmacist Salaries

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.

StateEmploymentEmp. / 1000Location QuotientHourlyAnnual
Alaska4901.510.766.78138910
California290001.870.8765.26135750
New Hampshire11301.770.8361.78128490
Maine12502.120.9960.26125340
Vermont4901.610.7559.45123650
North Carolina94202.281.0659.07122870
Minnesota54501.971.9258.72122140
Wisconsin54401.960.9258.66122020
Alabama53302.831.3258.44121550
Kentucky43402.361.158.43121530
Washington59902.010.9458.31121270
West Virginia23603.341.5658.22121090
Missouri63102.331.0958.21121080
Oregon39902.31.0758.2121050
Texas211201.820.8557.92120480
South Carolina49102.551.1957.89120410
Mississippi27402.481.1657.83120300
Nevada22001.780.8357.67119950
Maryland60602.331.0957.58119770
Arizona60002.321.0857.5119600
New Mexico16902.120.9957.11118790
New Jersey86402.211.0357.06118680
Wyoming5501.920.956.91118370
Tennessee80602.861.3456.88118310
Virginia71601.940.9156.72117970
Massachusetts66301.950.9156.69117910
Connecticut27801.670.7856.69117910
Oklahoma38002.381.1156.63117800
New York187702.090.9756.53117590
Kansas31502.31.0756.43117380
Georgia88502.15156.14116780
Rhode Island14002.961.3855.91116290
Florida203202.561.255.82116110
Illinois115501.970.9255.76115990
Arkansas32902.81.355.75115960
Colorado54902.241.0455.6115650
Hawaii14502.341.0955.54115520
Indiana63702.161.0155.4115230
Delaware8902.060.9655.4115230
Ohio118502.241.0553.31115040
Utah24101.820.8555.21114830
Louisiana41702.15154.77113910
DC6901.030.4854.62113610
Idaho14102.191.0254.59113560
Michigan87002.10.9854.44113230
North Dakota7601.691.7953.9112110
Pennsylvania128302.251.0553.44111160
Montana10902.431.1453.25110760
South Dakota12302.981.3952.62109450
Iowa34002.221.0450.3104620
Nebraska22402.351.148.43100740

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