The U.S. News & World Report informs that the pharmacist salary in our country is $120,950 a year and $58.15 an hour. Furthermore, the same source ranks the occupation as the 18th best paying job in the U.S. economy. However, a pharmacist can earn more or less than the aforementioned amount, depending on multiple factors. Find out how your employer, area, level of experience and more can determine your pharmacist salary.
Pharmacist Salary Influencers
Almost half of all pharmacists (42%) work in pharmacies and drug stores. The average pharmacist salary for this industry is $141,310 a year. After that, 19% of these medical professionals work in private hospitals, both surgical and general medical, with an income of $121,050.
Furthermore, approximately 8% of pharmacists work in grocery stores with $121,630 a year. The highest salary of a pharmacist can be found in department stores, with $125,500 a year. Nevertheless, this industry is also the one that employs the fewest pharmacists, just about 4%.
Another industry-related influential factor for the pharmacist technician salary is the employer. For instance, here are some examples of a retail pharmacist salary based on the company:
- Costco pharmacist salary – $134,352
- Walmart pharmacist salary – $131,840
- Target pharmacist salary – $131,031
- Walgreens pharmacist salary – $124,720
- CVS pharmacist salary – $122,165
2. Geographic Area
Location is just as relevant as the industry you are aiming for as a future pharmacist. According to pharmacist salary 2015 data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Alaska is the top-paying state for this occupation. Here, the pharmacist average salary is $138,910. Afterwards, there are a few more states with top pharmacist annual salary estimates. These are:
- Pharmacist salary California employees get – $135,750
- New Hampshire pharmacists salary – $128,490
- Average salary of a pharmacist in Maine – $125,340
- Vermont salary of pharmacist – $123,650
- Salary for pharmacist in North Carolina – $122,870
Additionally, some states are highly sought-after for pharmacist positions. Some of the most popular geographic areas for these professionals and their pharmacist tech salary rates are:
- Average pharmacist salary in Texas – $120,480
- Pharmacist salary NYC offers – $117,590
- Pharmacist salary Florida gives – $116,110
One of the reasons why they’re so popular is their level of employment. The BLS reports that the locations with the highest employment rates for pharmacists in the country are:
- New York
We also want to inform you about the lowest wages for this occupation. Data collected from the same source reveals that these are the lowest paying states for pharmacists:
- Pennsylvania average salary of pharmacist – $111,160
- Average salary for pharmacist in Montana – $110,760
- South Dakota average salary pharmacist gets – $109,450
- Iowa average salary for a pharmacist – $104,620
- Salary for a pharmacist in Nebraska – $100,740
Naturally, the pharmacist starting salary will be noticeably smaller than that for an experienced professional. However, there isn’t that big of a difference, as opposed to other healthcare careers. Payscale reports that the starting salary for pharmacist candidates is $108,000 a year. Pharmacists in their mid-career earn $115,000, while those with 10-20 years’ experience have $118,000 annually. Lastly, those who exceed 20 years of experience in this field earn $119,000.
Working Hours and Environment
As we previously explained, the most common working environment for pharmacists is a drug store or pharmacy. Less than 20% of all pharmacists work in private hospitals, grocery stores or department stores. While their environment is comfortable, pharmacists have to spend many hours standing up, which might affect their health in the long run.
Furthermore, the typical schedule for pharmacists is a full time one. Just around 1 in every 5 pharmacists has a part time schedule. Nevertheless, quite a few pharmacists are prone to working weekends and nights, due to the fact that pharmacies are usually open around the clock.
Pharmacist Salary by State
|State||Annual mean wage ($)|
|District of Columbia||113,610|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Bonuses and Benefit Packages
A great deal of pharmacists enjoys health benefit packages. To be precise, 88% of pharmacists have medical benefits. Additionally, 69% have dental benefits, while 57% have vision insurance. According to Payscale, only 15% of pharmacists do not have any health benefits at all.
Furthermore, pharmacists benefit from bonuses, commissions, and profit sharing. Based on performance and extra hours, pharmacists can gain up to $9,588 annually in bonuses. Even more so, between $518 and $10,077 a year can be received from profit sharing. Also, pharmacists can make $750 in commission on an annual basis.
Unfortunately, the main downside for pharmacists is that their job outlook is negative. These professionals are facing just a 3% increase in jobs until 2024. This is significantly lower than the national median for all U.S. occupations, which is 7%. In addition to this, it is far lower than the average for health diagnosing and treating practitioners in general, which is 17%.
In conclusion, the pharmacist salary is quite an appealing aspect for those searching for a top-paying career. However, we recommend that you consider the decline in positions for the following years. What you can do to increase your chances of getting a job as a pharmacist is to move to an area with high employment rates. Feel free to use our pharmacist salary by state table above and our employment information to find the ideal location for your future pharmacist career.
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