SOC: 29-1051.00


Dispense drugs prescribed by physicians and other health practitioners and provide information to patients about medications and their use. May advise physicians and other health practitioners on the selection, dosage, interactions, and side effects of medications.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
297,100 employed

Projected (2024):
306,200 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • Apothecary
  • Clinical Pharmacist
  • Doctor of Pharmacy
  • Druggist
  • Hospital Pharmacist
  • Industrial Pharmacist
  • Outpatient Pharmacy Manager
  • Pharmacist
  • Pharmacist Apprentice
  • Pharmacist in Charge (PIC)
  • Pharmacist in Charge, Owner (PIC, Owner)
  • Pharmacy Consultant
  • Pharmacy Director
  • Pharmacy Informaticist
  • Pharmacy Intern
  • Pharmacy Services Director
  • Prescriptionist
  • Radiopharmacist
  • Registered Pharmacist
  • Retail Pharmacist
  • Staff Pharmacist
  • Staff Pharmacist, Hospital

  • Job Zone Five: Extensive Preparation Needed


    Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience are needed for these occupations. Many require more than five years of experience. For example, surgeons must complete four years of college and an additional five to seven years of specialized medical training to be able to do their job.


    Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

    Job Training:

    Employees may need some on-the-job training, but most of these occupations assume that the person will already have the required skills, knowledge, work-related experience, and/or training.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Programming
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Troubleshooting
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Medicine and Dentistry
  • Therapy and Counseling
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • Philosophy and Theology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Review prescriptions to assure accuracy, to ascertain the needed ingredients, and to evaluate their suitability.
  • Provide information and advice regarding drug interactions, side effects, dosage, and proper medication storage.
  • Analyze prescribing trends to monitor patient compliance and to prevent excessive usage or harmful interactions.
  • Order and purchase pharmaceutical supplies, medical supplies, or drugs, maintaining stock and storing and handling it properly.
  • Maintain records, such as pharmacy files, patient profiles, charge system files, inventories, control records for radioactive nuclei, or registries of poisons, narcotics, or controlled drugs.
  • Provide specialized services to help patients manage conditions such as diabetes, asthma, smoking cessation, or high blood pressure.
  • Advise customers on the selection of medication brands, medical equipment, or healthcare supplies.
  • Collaborate with other health care professionals to plan, monitor, review, or evaluate the quality or effectiveness of drugs or drug regimens, providing advice on drug applications or characteristics.
  • Compound and dispense medications as prescribed by doctors and dentists, by calculating, weighing, measuring, and mixing ingredients, or oversee these activities.
  • Refer patients to other health professionals or agencies when appropriate.
  • Prepare sterile solutions or infusions for use in surgical procedures, emergency rooms, or patients' homes.
  • Plan, implement, or maintain procedures for mixing, packaging, or labeling pharmaceuticals, according to policy and legal requirements, to ensure quality, security, and proper disposal.
  • Manage pharmacy operations, hiring or supervising staff, performing administrative duties, or buying or selling non-pharmaceutical merchandise.
  • Work in hospitals or clinics or for Health Management Organizations (HMOs), dispensing prescriptions, serving as a medical team consultant, or specializing in specific drug therapy areas, such as oncology or nuclear pharmacotherapy.
  • Assess the identity, strength, or purity of medications.
  • Teach pharmacy students serving as interns in preparation for their graduation or licensure.
  • Publish educational information for other pharmacists, doctors, or patients.
  • Offer health promotion or prevention activities, such as training people to use blood pressure devices or diabetes monitors.
  • Contact insurance companies to resolve billing issues.
  • Update or troubleshoot pharmacy information databases.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Ampoule filling machines
  • Area survey meters
  • Automated drug dispensing equipment
  • Barcode scanning/prescription tracking systems
  • Binocular light compound microscopes
  • Capsule counters
  • Electronic blood pressure monitors
  • Electronic toploading balances
  • Filters for glass containers/ampoules
  • Geiger-Muller counters
  • Glucometers
  • Hemacytometers
  • Horizontal air flow laminar hoods
  • Hospital beds
  • Intravenous IV therapy equipment
  • Label-making machines
  • Laminar flow hoods
  • Lead shielded drawing stations
  • Lead transport shields
  • Manual blood pressure equipment
  • Medication pulling/dispensing systems
  • Metric graduates
  • Metric weights
  • Mortars
  • Multiple channel well scintillation counters
  • Needles
  • Ostomy products
  • Oxygen therapy equipment
  • Personal computers
  • Pestles
  • Radiation shields for syringes and vials
  • Radiochemical fume hood and filter systems
  • Radionucleide dose calibrators
  • Sealing machines
  • Single channel well scintillation counters
  • Syringes
  • Tablet computers
  • Torsion balances
  • Vertical air flow laminar hoods
  • Wheelchairs
  • Cardinal Health Pyxis CII Safe
  • Computer records systems
  • Epic Systems software
  • Healthprolink MedAtlas
  • Insurance claim processing software
  • Label-making software
  • MEDITECH software
  • MedTeach software
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Word
  • Multitask software
  • Pharmaceutical Care Network software
  • Recordkeeping software
  • RxKinetics UD Labels for Windows
  • Spreadsheet software
  • TPNassist software
  • TTP LabTech comPOUND
  • Web browser software
  • Word processing software

  • healthcare practitioners and technical

    industry stats

    SOC: 29-0000

    Total Employed: 8,021,800

    Average Annual Salary: $77,800