March 2, 2012


(Washington, DC)—As one of the “Best Jobs of 2012,” pharmacists’ earnings potential is “high” in a “well-paying” market that should see significant growth over the next decade, according to U.S. News & World Report magazine.

“This new report runs counter to claims that independent drugstores need new legislation that protects them from competition,” said Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) President and CEO Mark Merritt. “Independent drugstores are a successful, growing industry that should stop lobbying for new laws that force employers to pay them even more.”

Key points from the “Best Jobs of 2012” report include:

  • Job prospects should be excellent in the years to come and the earnings potential remains relatively high.
  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 25.4 percent employment growth for pharmacists between 2010 and 2020, with the field adding 69,700 new jobs.
  • According to the Labor Department, the median annual salary for a pharmacist was $111,570 in 2010.

Drugstores are expanding according to recent research from the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS). The report finds that 517 new drugstores have opened in the last two years while revenues increased by $1.1 billion last year alone.

As policymakers seek solutions to lower health spending, the independent drugstore lobby is pushing new laws that will help them raise prescription drug costs. These include:

  • Banning discounts that encourage employees to get their long-term prescriptions by mail;
  • Banning aggressive audits of drugstores with suspicious billing practices;
  • Banning prescription drug plans that automatically deliver refills to employees;
  • Requiring prescription drug plans to include every drugstore in their coverage network; and
  • Granting independent drugstores unprecedented anti-trust exemptions.