Why pharmacy is still a great healthcare career and you should not listen to anyone that says otherwise.
You have probably seen blogs that have declared the demise of pharmacy. For years we have heard that robots will replace pharmacists or technicians will replace pharmacists. Don't study pharmacy because there will be no jobs by the time you graduate. Certainly the economic slow down of the last few years coupled with high graduation rates of pharmacists has contributed to a surplus of pharmacists in the retail and hospital setting, leading to fear and uncertainty in the pharmacy profession. It does not help that many pharmacists think that there are only two types of jobs for pharmacists―retail pharmacy or hospital pharmacy. Despite the uncertainty and employment challenges here are 13 reasons why pharmacy is still a great healthcare career.
Future job growth is very favorable for pharmacists. Between 2010 and 2020 the Bureau of Labor and Statistics projects a 25% growth in the number of pharmacy jobs which is faster than projected growth for all occupations combined. Although this is projection and no one can really predict the future, at least the projection is not for a decrease in pharmacy jobs.
The baby boomers are not getting any younger and they will need medications and care for many acute and chronic conditions.
Advances in technology are producing more sophisticated medications but side effects and drug interactions have not been reduced.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) will increase the need for more healthcare professionals, including pharmacists. Appropriately trained pharmacists may have increased responsibilities in primary care.
As the number of pharmacists increase there will be pressure for pharmacists to explore other industries that need the unique skills of pharmacists. One of the most read articles on RxEconsult is Pharmaceutical industry jobs for pharmacists, supporting the notion that more pharmacists are realizing that they can do more than traditional pharmacy practice. There are many nontraditional pharmacy jobs to explore.
Advances in communication and health information technology will facilitate telehealth jobs. Pharmacy counseling can easily be provided remotely. There are websites where pharmacists can counsel patients over the internet. Here are some telehealth pharmacy jobs.
New pharmacy care models such as medication therapy management (MTM) will open an era of new pharmacist entrepreneurs and opportunities.
Chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, arthritis do not have a cure and as more drugs are discovered for these conditions drug regimens will be more complex.
The number of practice settings where pharmacists can work provides many career options.
Pharmacists are highly compensated professionals. There are few healthcare jobs where you can receive over $100,000 without experience.
Pharmacy is a great profession for women. Forbes listed pharmacist as the number one paying job for women in 2013.
New health care models like the medical home will include pharmacists.
Pharmacists will eventually receive provider status from the Federal Government. The Affordable Healthcare Act may be the catalyst because more primary care healthcare providers will be needed and pharmacists are already providing primary care in many settings.
For those who want to preach doom and gloom none of these reasons will convince them that the future looks bright for appropriately trained pharmacists. Pharmacists who want to lead, seize the moment, and pounce on new opportunities should prepare themselves through appropriate training and credentials. Follow the road less traveled and may you find the perfect pharmacy career that is waiting for you at the end of your journey.
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