Wickett

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Since there is so much negativity around pharmacy right now, do you guys think that in 10-15 yrs the job market will rebound?
Only if all these new schools shut down. Market demand is cyclical, but when you keep ramping up pumping out way too many grads, how do you expect it to rebound? Look at the law field.
 
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Only if all these new schools shut down. Market demand is cyclical, but when you keep ramping up pumping out way too many grads, how do you expect it to rebound? Look at the law field.
Is there any hope of the new schools shutting down? And are they still opening at a rapid rate?
 

stoichiometrist

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If I recall correctly, it took about 20 years for the pharmacist job market to cover from the saturation in the late 1970s. That's 20 years which you could be in a field that is in demand (i.e. software engineering, physician assistant, etc.) and have good job security and high pay instead of having to scrape by on multiple per-diem jobs. By the time you can reasonably expect the job market to recover, you may be in your 40s or 50s with little in assets and savings. Don't forget that much of what you earn will go toward the astronomical amount of debt you will incur with today's tuition rates.
 

Wickett

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Is there any hope of the new schools shutting down? And are they still opening at a rapid rate?
As long as kids keep applying and getting ridiculous loans to go to these schools, then no. The only way it would stop is either some law or more stringent accreditation standards being put in place. In the past 4 years, my state has opened 3 schools with more planned. It isn't regulated at all so there is no incentive to stop opening them.
 

giga

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If you can show a benefit to making the training requirements for a pharmacist more stringent and rigorous, which will make it more expensive for schools to operate and expand, create a higher barrier to enter the market for new pharmacy schools, and also decrease the size of qualified applicants (both via increasing the standards of acceptance for schools, and making the NAPLEX more challenging), then the market will improve for pharmacists/pharmacists will become more valuable. Perhaps the pharmacy profession will evolve like nursing, and there will be "pharmacist practitioner" training programs similar to NP training programs. If these new PPs (heh heh heh) can provide an in-demand skill (like primary care), you might have a new booming "advanced pharmacist" market.

ETA: making residency training a requirement to enter the profession will also help lower the supply of pharmacists - though I don't see that happening any time soon, especially for retail jobs.
 
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Lnsean

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If I recall correctly, it took about 20 years for the pharmacist job market to cover from the saturation in the late 1970s. That's 20 years which you could be in a field that is in demand (i.e. software engineering, physician assistant, etc.) and have good job security and high pay instead of having to scrape by on multiple per-diem jobs. By the time you can reasonably expect the job market to recover, you may be in your 40s or 50s with little in assets and savings. Don't forget that much of what you earn will go toward the astronomical amount of debt you will incur with today's tuition rates.
lmao...there is an astronomical number of new pharmacy schools since then. We're heading the way of the the JD degree.
 

mentos

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Nope. You have to be crazy to enter pharmacy school now. Retail pharmacists are more likely to be replaced by robots in 10-15 years. Look elsewhere.

10 years ago: My store had 3 Rphs at once.
Today: My store has some overlap (2 Rphs at once) on busy weekdays. 1 Rph only on weekends.
10 years from now: What do you think?
 
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stoichiometrist

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lmao...there is an astronomical number of new pharmacy schools since then. We're heading the way of the the JD degree.
I'm not sure about how many schools opened in the 70's, but it sounds that things are much worse today when the number of pharmacy school graduates has doubled over the last 15 years.
 
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sakigt

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I think if you ask anyone in their current job they would say the sky is falling.

Except for tech jobs, of course.

Whatever you do, know what youre getting yourself into and get it done as cheaply as possible.
 

BenJammin

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The job market is "normal". You fools who go to school, sit and spin on your thumb, and cruise through rotations get what you deserve. Pharmacy students worth a damn are getting job offers just like every other profession out there.
 
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Wickett

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The job market is "normal". You fools who go to school, sit and spin on your thumb, and cruise through rotations get what you deserve. Pharmacy students worth a damn are getting job offers just like every other profession out there.
I know plenty of kids that did all the right things in school, interned etc from my graduating class this year. Most got employment, sure, but mainly 30hr float. The market isn't as dead as people say on here, but it isn't great either.
 
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Sine Cura

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I'm definitely not counting on being able to work in retail for even 10 years, much less make a career out of it. Unfortunately the PharmD is not really a "portable" degree. Be complacent at your own peril...
 
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Chriskahn

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If I recall correctly, it took about 20 years for the pharmacist job market to cover from the saturation in the late 1970s. That's 20 years which you could be in a field that is in demand (i.e. software engineering, physician assistant, etc.) and have good job security and high pay instead of having to scrape by on multiple per-diem jobs. By the time you can reasonably expect the job market to recover, you may be in your 40s or 50s with little in assets and savings. Don't forget that much of what you earn will go toward the astronomical amount of debt you will incur with today's tuition rates.
You and software engineering lol. Microsoft is about to lay off 2,800 employees and probably will get the state to authorize thousands of H1B visas to bring more bodies from overseas to do the same job for half the price. This is the reason why software engineers are getting such crappy wages as of late.
 

stoichiometrist

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You and software engineering lol. Microsoft is about to lay off 2,800 employees and probably will get the state to authorize thousands of H1B visas to bring more bodies from overseas to do the same job for half the price. This is the reason why software engineers are getting such crappy wages as of late.
Tell that to:

1) My peers who actually complain about getting bombarded with messages from recruiters left and right. This is something that we as pharmacists would kill for, especially for non-retail positions
2) Job hoppers who increase their compensation by a significant amount, sometimes double that of their last job
3) Coding bootcamp graduates who earn $70k+/year upon graduation
4) Recent CS graduates earning $100k+
5) Employees that get showered with perks, i.e. catered gourmet meals, on-site laundry services, employee shuttles, etc. Good luck getting your chain retail pharmacy to even give you a lunch break, let alone provide you a gourmet lunch or send a shuttle to drive you to a store that is 1 hour away where you'll be floating.
 

Lnsean

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Don't go into pharmacy for job security, it's not really there anymore. The majority of the jobs are in retail and there is alot of automation now. You really only need 2 pharmacists per store with rotating schedules unless it's a super high volume store. Back a few years ago, we had 3 pharmacists at our store...now there is this
You and software engineering lol. Microsoft is about to lay off 2,800 employees and probably will get the state to authorize thousands of H1B visas to bring more bodies from overseas to do the same job for half the price. This is the reason why software engineers are getting such crappy wages as of late.
umm microsoft is not the only company...every company needs engineering (whether its computer or software). I have friends who work for Goldmansachs with engineering degrees and they make bank. Pharmacy? You got your top 3 big chains (about to be 2) which is retail and your hospitals. These are the majority of your jobs. Any hiccups in reimbursements...which is happening alot now...and you're fuked.

Again, not discouraging anyone but don't go into pharmacy for the job security...go because you want to do it. As for money....a lot of people that I know that started below me have all surpassed my salary...6 years post-degree. My salary hasn't increased dramatically like that and not likely will unless I go into middle management. Of course, they're all smart people and very good at what they do...which should be the majority of the people that make it out of pharmacy as well. We're comparing apples to apples.
 
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gwarm01

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The job market is "normal". You fools who go to school, sit and spin on your thumb, and cruise through rotations get what you deserve. Pharmacy students worth a damn are getting job offers just like every other profession out there.
I know plenty of kids that did all the right things in school, interned etc from my graduating class this year. Most got employment, sure, but mainly 30hr float. The market isn't as dead as people say on here, but it isn't great either.
You guys aren't wrong. I think the reason why we are so cautious is because pharmacy is still presented as it was in the early 2000's. People think they can enter the field now and get a job in any city working fulltime and making tons of money. You can still do well for yourself if you are intelligent and ambitious, but it is not the free ride that it used to be and potential pharmacists need to be aware of the challenges and sacrifices that await them.
 
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confettiflyer

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The job market is bad? Seems fine to me. The whole region's been hiring at a pretty rapid clip, all the good students/residents have been snapped up. Tons of open positions for experienced pharmacists.

I suppose the job market sucks if you're bottom quartile new grad, but....that's like every other industry out there.

Since when did people think that a PharmD entitles them to a job? ::rolls eyes::
 

Chriskahn

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umm microsoft is not the only company...every company needs engineering (whether its computer or software). I have friends who work for Goldmansachs with engineering degrees and they make bank. Pharmacy? You got your top 3 big chains (about to be 2) which is retail and your hospitals. These are the majority of your jobs. Any hiccups in reimbursements...which is happening alot now...and you're fuked.
Thats like saying "I have friends who works for the NFL with a PharmD and they make bank." Microsoft isnt the only company that is outsourcing software engineers. Besides, Microsoft is the biggest software company on the planet. If Walgreens laid off 2800 pharmacists just to outsource work to foreigners...wouldn't you say that the job outlook for pharmacists are bad?
 

lord999

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Tell that to:

1) My peers who actually complain about getting bombarded with messages from recruiters left and right. This is something that we as pharmacists would kill for, especially for non-retail positions
2) Job hoppers who increase their compensation by a significant amount, sometimes double that of their last job
3) Coding bootcamp graduates who earn $70k+/year upon graduation
4) Recent CS graduates earning $100k+
5) Employees that get showered with perks, i.e. catered gourmet meals, on-site laundry services, employee shuttles, etc. Good luck getting your chain retail pharmacy to even give you a lunch break, let alone provide you a gourmet lunch or send a shuttle to drive you to a store that is 1 hour away where you'll be floating.

There's a spectrum for IT programming. It's awesome in the early career, but I dare people to find old programmers outside the civil service or military applications, there aren't many. There's a reason, ageism is quite alive and well in IT, and about the time when you should be hitting your stride in your career (45-55), you get pink slipped as there is always a younger and hungrier group that comes in behind you like those bootcamp programmers and H1B slaves. Like engineering, for the rank and file programmer, it's getting harder and harder to sustain a career as the floor is flooding over with just good enough workers like right now.

'Programmer' also somewhat too broad, like the generalizations about medicine without the pay differentiation in specialty care. There's one other problem though, which is like pharmacy in the early 00s and tech in the 90s, IT has a bunch of VC money that is completely distorting the market right now. It's great when you're spending VC (venture capital) money, but I look to Oracle, Microsoft, Cisco, and IBM as the bellwethers since they are not VC money and they've hung around for long enough. A lot of the recruiters and the companies they work for are trying to go after proven talent and are willing to pay for it as it's not very easy to judge programmer quality outside of seeing their piecework (see Mythical Man Month for more details).

Why I say this is I went to class with a bunch of the late 90s early 00s tech washouts after VC failed the first time to sustain the bubble. Even for the great companies like Amazon, they got rid of a bunch of their staff during the downturn in the early 00s and hired cheaper younger people to replace them. Again, it was awesome when you're young, but it's no way to sustain a family. But when the VC or the economy turns, I expect this to be the 90s Part II, just with another generation. So, if you're into big markets and big risks for bigger rewards, IT is for you. For a solid, boring, and quiet career, choose healthcare as my washouts remarked (and it proved prescient). Even today's harder economy for pharmacists, it's not like the 1970s yet, but healthcare values increased experience over hungrier employees (except retail in the major MSA's right now).

Pharmacy is boring and reliable for a career. But that's not enough for most people, which I consider a shame. The 70s had the same problem but if you were willing to work at it, you could find quite stable employment even in the worst of times. It's just meant you had to move and had to accept starter jobs (particularly if you were from PA/NJ).

Now if you're cross-trained in both, you do write your ticket as my fellows found out. I certainly did well myself.

And the older among us who practiced in SoCal, Vegas, and AZ, remember when Safeway and Osco tried to import South African pharmacists because they could undercut the Americans and the Canadians? Boy, that was a hell of a lawsuit disaster for them, wasn't it? Importing pharmacists has been tried, it doesn't work for cultural considerations oddly enough (this may be an insult to the Canadians, but they blend in well enough that you wouldn't know most of the time, where the SA Afrikaners stood out like sore thumbs). Flooding the market works better.
 

Sine Cura

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So why did they decide to sponsor South African pharmacists? Was it just a matter of capitalizing on the end of apartheid and Afrikaner emigration?

Was there also a period of sponsoring Indian pharmacists as well?
 

Lnsean

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Thats like saying "I have friends who works for the NFL with a PharmD and they make bank." Microsoft isnt the only company that is outsourcing software engineers. Besides, Microsoft is the biggest software company on the planet. If Walgreens laid off 2800 pharmacists just to outsource work to foreigners...wouldn't you say that the job outlook for pharmacists are bad?
Umm walgreens, cvs, riteiad, walmart have been doing this for the past 15 years with foreign graduates and sponsoring their visas and intern hours. Back in 2006, when I was an intern for Walgreens, you would not believe the number of pharmacists that told me they got their degree in India. It's no different than laying off 2,800 pharmacists right there on the spot because of these sponsorships, American-trained pharmacists lose out. The practice has slowed today because of the saturation but I'm sure still goes on...on a lower scale.

Microsoft isn't the only company outsourcing...of course...but all companies need engineers. The problem with engeering is there is a wider spectrum unlike healthcare where you graduate with X degree and you get X pay. You don't have to be good in heatlhcare...just okay at your job...and you get the X pay. Everywhere else, law /engineering/finance, you have to be excellent all around but the sky is much much much higher than X pay as pharmacist.
 
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sosoo

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healthcare spending (and hence employment) is at its peak b/c of baby boomers. when the baby boomers sadly pass, a gap in spending will occur (and hence reduction in employment).. we are at saturation level right now. what that means in the stock market is that we are at "overbought" territory, and eventually it will decline from there. ...
 

Carol is Alpha

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healthcare spending (and hence employment) is at its peak b/c of baby boomers. when the baby boomers sadly pass, a gap in spending will occur (and hence reduction in employment).. we are at saturation level right now. what that means in the stock market is that we are at "overbought" territory, and eventually it will decline from there. ...
Boomers will be distributing ( selling financial assets/downsizing homes). Millennials were hoped to be an echo boom. Couple problems with that. They gotz no real jobz and are already leveraged with student debt. They have already shot their "consumptive" wad. And the Fed knows this. That's why rates are going negative and everybody will be getting checks or EBT cards with an expiration date.
 

ldiot

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People really worry about automation, I did did too, though going to a mail-order rotation made me think a little harder.

I took the total number of pharmacists there divided by total scripts per day and compared it to the retail chain I work for. It turns out the mail order pharmacy actually had more pharmacists per script than my retail chain despite all the counting being automated.

I guess the concern is with certain machines that only 10% of scripts have to be verified or something. I know some informatics pharmacist said in the hospital they don't even have to verify all the meds coming out of the machine, but that might be because they were unit dose. At the mail order every script was verified by two pharmacists, one at data entry and one visual verification.

But as it stands now it seems like mail order pharmacy isn't hurting the job market since they have as many pharmacists or more per script.
 

ldiot

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healthcare spending (and hence employment) is at its peak b/c of baby boomers. when the baby boomers sadly pass, a gap in spending will occur (and hence reduction in employment).. we are at saturation level right now. what that means in the stock market is that we are at "overbought" territory, and eventually it will decline from there. ...
This is a fair point. I personally don't think spending will go down, but it will more likely flatline. The stock market is way overpriced and hopefully bottoms out just as I finish off my student loan, lol.
 

genesis09

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Automation might effect the number of tech positions. Its effect on pharmacists will be more limited. The job market is cyclical. I can't say what will happen next.
 

knight on horse

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I was a prophet about pharmacy more than a decade ago but will have to think more before making a confident prediction for its market 15 years into the future. That being said, going to school for pharmacy right now is certainly a terrible idea

There is a future in automation. Somebody will be paid big bucks to imagine and implement the new pharmacy of the future. Need to brush off my school daydreams and youthful brilliance
 
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knight on horse

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The job market is bad? Seems fine to me. The whole region's been hiring at a pretty rapid clip, all the good students/residents have been snapped up. Tons of open positions for experienced pharmacists.

I suppose the job market sucks if you're bottom quartile new grad, but....that's like every other industry out there.

Since when did people think that a PharmD entitles them to a job? ::rolls eyes::
So what to do if one is retail based but smarter than most doctors. Will have to reactivate connections, though however much they may want to they can't hire if there are no spots. Don't feel like a having a 2 year turnaround, not 21 anymore lul and they are able to hire out of school for big money

Tbh no longer sure if I would even take a random hospital job. They are not really my peers and I'm about to switch fields
 

knight on horse

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There's a spectrum for IT programming. It's awesome in the early career, but I dare people to find old programmers outside the civil service or military applications, there aren't many. There's a reason, ageism is quite alive and well in IT, and about the time when you should be hitting your stride in your career (45-55), you get pink slipped as there is always a younger and hungrier group that comes in behind you like those bootcamp programmers and H1B slaves. Like engineering, for the rank and file programmer, it's getting harder and harder to sustain a career as the floor is flooding over with just good enough workers like right now.

'Programmer' also somewhat too broad, like the generalizations about medicine without the pay differentiation in specialty care. There's one other problem though, which is like pharmacy in the early 00s and tech in the 90s, IT has a bunch of VC money that is completely distorting the market right now. It's great when you're spending VC (venture capital) money, but I look to Oracle, Microsoft, Cisco, and IBM as the bellwethers since they are not VC money and they've hung around for long enough. A lot of the recruiters and the companies they work for are trying to go after proven talent and are willing to pay for it as it's not very easy to judge programmer quality outside of seeing their piecework (see Mythical Man Month for more details).

Why I say this is I went to class with a bunch of the late 90s early 00s tech washouts after VC failed the first time to sustain the bubble. Even for the great companies like Amazon, they got rid of a bunch of their staff during the downturn in the early 00s and hired cheaper younger people to replace them. Again, it was awesome when you're young, but it's no way to sustain a family. But when the VC or the economy turns, I expect this to be the 90s Part II, just with another generation. So, if you're into big markets and big risks for bigger rewards, IT is for you. For a solid, boring, and quiet career, choose healthcare as my washouts remarked (and it proved prescient). Even today's harder economy for pharmacists, it's not like the 1970s yet, but healthcare values increased experience over hungrier employees (except retail in the major MSA's right now).

Pharmacy is boring and reliable for a career. But that's not enough for most people, which I consider a shame. The 70s had the same problem but if you were willing to work at it, you could find quite stable employment even in the worst of times. It's just meant you had to move and had to accept starter jobs (particularly if you were from PA/NJ).

Now if you're cross-trained in both, you do write your ticket as my fellows found out. I certainly did well myself.

And the older among us who practiced in SoCal, Vegas, and AZ, remember when Safeway and Osco tried to import South African pharmacists because they could undercut the Americans and the Canadians? Boy, that was a hell of a lawsuit disaster for them, wasn't it? Importing pharmacists has been tried, it doesn't work for cultural considerations oddly enough (this may be an insult to the Canadians, but they blend in well enough that you wouldn't know most of the time, where the SA Afrikaners stood out like sore thumbs). Flooding the market works better.
Agreed, can't wait. However, we can be certain that if Trump is not President, it will be cheap labor uber alles
 

lord999

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"It will be cheap labor uber alles", period. It doesn't matter the politics; it is merely the ruthless economy and classical capitalism. You didn't want to be a subsistence farming serf in the age of Social Origins of Democracy and Dictatorship. You don't want to be in an obvious automation target profession in this age. It's better for the consumer this way.

And I'll throw something else out, how many healthcare workers do not get paid directly or indirectly through the federal government? I think you'd be disturbed at the answer if you really see how far CMS gets into the business.
 

Hope1974

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"It will be cheap labor uber alles", period. It doesn't matter the politics; it is merely the ruthless economy and classical capitalism."

"Ja genau das stimmt", classical capitalism...
 

Lnsean

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"It will be cheap labor uber alles", period. It doesn't matter the politics; it is merely the ruthless economy and classical capitalism. You didn't want to be a subsistence farming serf in the age of Social Origins of Democracy and Dictatorship. You don't want to be in an obvious automation target profession in this age. It's better for the consumer this way.

And I'll throw something else out, how many healthcare workers do not get paid directly or indirectly through the federal government? I think you'd be disturbed at the answer if you really see how far CMS gets into the business.
yep...people keep asking for a single payer system...we're getting pretty darn close..and you might not like what you'll find.