Hey there Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

Pharmacy Job market in the future

Announcements Posted on
TSR wants you: get involved with Power Hour. 10-04-2014
Interview Discussion 30-01-2014
    • Thread Starter
    • 34 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Hey, I just want to know if anyone has any ideas on what the job market is going to be like in another 5 + years are so. It's because I've been speaking to a few pharmacists in my area and they said it's really difficult now to find jobs now and find locum work. Mainly due to more pharmacists graduating every year and more new schools are opening, but however they did say that the £9000 may play a role to cut down the number of students. Does anyone have any ideas on what the future holds for pharmacy job market???
    • 4 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    The £9,000 tuition fees have only made Pharmacy a more desirable course. As a vocation with a set career at the end students are more willing to pay for this type of course than a non-vocational arts course. This has been proven true with this year's applications for pharmacy increasing across the country. Some schools are reporting a 30% increase in applications this year.

    Needless to say, we are now moving towards (if not already there) saturation between graduates and jobs. This year will see another jump in preregistration trainee numbers and there are three new schools of pharmacy opening in 2013/14.

    The profession is already aware of this problem and it acting to make changes where it can: http://www.chemistanddruggist.co.uk/...on-a-time-bomb

    The BPSA has also developed a motion, at its Annual Conference this Easter, stating there should be a cap on the number of pharmacy students. This is something they will now work towards making a reality.

    On a side note (in Devil's advocate style also) the number of increased locums is a good thing. This will give employers a choice of who to employ and will allow them to take on the best locums. It will also reduce the demand for locums and this could see pharmacists moving from the locum workforce to permanent positions. Now that's not all a bad thing is it?
    • 2 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    The individuals it would likely deter are those who are failed medical applicants. The additional year of tuition fees along with the living costs associated with it would most likely put off those who are not passionate about the proffesion and those who see it as a gateway to grad medicine.

    Capping the amount of students entering the course would actually benifit the profession. Universities will be limited in their choices, an increase in the entry requirements will reflect this. ultimately this SHOULD lead to the best possible candidates entering the profession.
    • Thread Starter
    • 34 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by TigerSwift)
    The £9,000 tuition fees have only made Pharmacy a more desirable course. As a vocation with a set career at the end students are more willing to pay for this type of course than a non-vocational arts course. This has been proven true with this year's applications for pharmacy increasing across the country. Some schools are reporting a 30% increase in applications this year.

    Needless to say, we are now moving towards (if not already there) saturation between graduates and jobs. This year will see another jump in preregistration trainee numbers and there are three new schools of pharmacy opening in 2013/14.

    The profession is already aware of this problem and it acting to make changes where it can: http://www.chemistanddruggist.co.uk/...on-a-time-bomb

    The BPSA has also developed a motion, at its Annual Conference this Easter, stating there should be a cap on the number of pharmacy students. This is something they will now work towards making a reality.

    On a side note (in Devil's advocate style also) the number of increased locums is a good thing. This will give employers a choice of who to employ and will allow them to take on the best locums. It will also reduce the demand for locums and this could see pharmacists moving from the locum workforce to permanent positions. Now that's not all a bad thing is it?
    Reading that article is just depressing. I worked so hard to achieve AAB and get 4 offers for pharmacy and it might go all down the toilet!
    • Thread Starter
    • 34 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by pharmasaurus)
    The individuals it would likely deter are those who are failed medical applicants. The additional year of tuition fees along with the living costs associated with it would most likely put off those who are not passionate about the proffesion and those who see it as a gateway to grad medicine.

    Capping the amount of students entering the course would actually benifit the profession. Universities will be limited in their choices, an increase in the entry requirements will reflect this. ultimately this SHOULD lead to the best possible candidates entering the profession.
    I really do hope they cap the number of students. About the failed medical applicants, I was speaking to the Admission tutor at Aston at my interview and he said that he to reject all the failed medical and dental applicants last year who achieved grades like A*A*A because they showed no motivation towards pharmacy.
    • 11 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    The role of the pharmacist (in the community) is changing and expanding all the time and with an ageing population I think more prescribing responsibilities will be handed over to pharmacists to free up the gp's for less routine stuff. It's all about services.

    Locuming does seem appealing and of the locums I talk to the best ones have plenty of work and the less popular ones have less work. However in terms of delivering service regular pharmacists seem to do a better job because they get to know their customers and are able to provide all the services their pharmacy offers.

    Also remember if locums are complaining that there isn't much work they are probably still earning more than they would as a second pharmacist because otherwise they would be applying for permanent positions.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by jami74)
    The role of the pharmacist (in the community) is changing and expanding all the time and with an ageing population I think more prescribing responsibilities will be handed over to pharmacists to free up the gp's for less routine stuff. It's all about services.

    Locuming does seem appealing and of the locums I talk to the best ones have plenty of work and the less popular ones have less work. However in terms of delivering service regular pharmacists seem to do a better job because they get to know their customers and are able to provide all the services their pharmacy offers.

    Also remember if locums are complaining that there isn't much work they are probably still earning more than they would as a second pharmacist because otherwise they would be applying for permanent positions.
    I'm sorry that's just pie in the sky drivel and the same thing was being said 5 years ago and the role of the pharmacists has not expanded, gp's don't want pharmacists to free up their time, nor is that even going to happen with the new nhs services commissioning pot in the gp's hands now,locum rates are decreasing and things are bleak now. What you have said sounds nice and is a university brochure's delight but sadly that isnt happening.

    Im amazed that the profession didnt see this oversupply happening years ago? Were the main pharmacy board heads sleeping? Now there is a massive problem regarding job future and its going to get very hard to control. Caps should have been forced years ago to prevent this oversupply which is going to get worst in the next year let alone in 5 years time when pharmacy graduates will find it even more difficult to get a job.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by college80)
    I'm sorry that's just pie in the sky drivel and the same thing was being said 5 years ago and the role of the pharmacists has not expanded, gp's don't want pharmacists to free up their time, nor is that even going to happen with the new nhs services commissioning pot in the gp's hands now,locum rates are decreasing and things are bleak now. What you have said sounds nice and is a university brochure's delight but sadly that isnt happening.

    Im amazed that the profession didnt see this oversupply happening years ago? Were the main pharmacy board heads sleeping? Now there is a massive problem regarding job future and its going to get very hard to control. Caps should have been forced years ago to prevent this oversupply which is going to get worst in the next year let alone in 5 years time when pharmacy graduates will find it even more difficult to get a job.
    Well how come every pharmacy graduate from Aston University get jobs. I mean very year they get 100% employment rate for their pharmacy course.

    Tbh, if I was a pharmacy graduate without a job I would move to another country like USA, Abu Dhabi or Australia because pharmacists in those countries get paid really well and were talking about 6 figures salaries! Those countries actually require pharmacists.

    Let be honest if you cant get a job after all that hard work through high school, college and university - you might as well just shoot yourself!
    • 2 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by MoAli45)
    Well how come every pharmacy graduate from Aston University get jobs. I mean very year they get 100% employment rate for their pharmacy course.

    Tbh, if I was a pharmacy graduate without a job I would move to another country like USA, Abu Dhabi or Australia because pharmacists in those countries get paid really well and were talking about 6 figures salaries! Those countries actually require pharmacists.

    Let be honest if you cant get a job after all that hard work through high school, college and university - you might as well just shoot yourself!
    You realise that the employment rate looks at how many students are in employment 6 months after graduating right?? Well youll find that a lot of universities have a 100% employment rate because all their students are currently in their pre reg year.
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I was just wondering, after graduating, how difficult/easy is it for an international student to do their pre-registration year in the UK?
    • 11 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Jobs are hard to get in whatever career you choose especially with cuts being made everywhere, with stiffer competition people will just have to be more flexible and more imaginative. I'm not sure there are any degrees that guarantee a cushy well paid job at the end, if thats what you are looking for then move along please and leave these jobs for the people who really want to be pharmacists and can put the degree to good use.
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Blaming the increasing number of schools, the increase amount of graduates, the nhs or just blaming things in general is a waste of time. Rather than focusing energy on finger pointing, complaining and worrying about things that you don't have control over, why not just make yourself more employable. There is always going to be job offers, and when you apply you just have to ensure that you're the best candidate so you don't have to worry.
    • 4 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by oliviagunapalan)
    I was just wondering, after graduating, how difficult/easy is it for an international student to do their pre-registration year in the UK?
    This is a hard one to answer as the situation is fairly complicated. It changed at the start of april, changed again mid april, and will be changing yet again later this month. I suggest you keep an eye on the BPSA website, RPS networks and the PJ Online website for announcements regarding VISAs for prereg.


    (Original post by Maturestudent1)
    Blaming the increasing number of schools, the increase amount of graduates, the nhs or just blaming things in general is a waste of time. Rather than focusing energy on finger pointing, complaining and worrying about things that you don't have control over, why not just make yourself more employable. There is always going to be job offers, and when you apply you just have to ensure that you're the best candidate so you don't have to worry.
    I kind of agree and disagree with this. I think as a healthcare profession there should be controlled numbers - simply because the DoH funds £18,400 per preregistration trainee. What is the point in the government spending all that money and not getting employable pharmacists from it?

    However, I also agree with the statement that you should make yourself more employable. I mentioned that in another thread covering this topic. I think I said the joe bloggs standard students have to worry - but those who get a variety of placements, do extra curricular activities, and generally make their CV sexier don't have to worry.
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by TigerSwift)
    This is a hard one to answer as the situation is fairly complicated. It changed at the start of april, changed again mid april, and will be changing yet again later this month. I suggest you keep an eye on the BPSA website, RPS networks and the PJ Online website for announcements regarding VISAs for prereg.
    Alright! Thank you for the info.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by TigerSwift)
    This is a hard one to answer as the situation is fairly complicated. It changed at the start of april, changed again mid april, and will be changing yet again later this month. I suggest you keep an eye on the BPSA website, RPS networks and the PJ Online website for announcements regarding VISAs for prereg.




    I kind of agree and disagree with this. I think as a healthcare profession there should be controlled numbers - simply because the DoH funds £18,400 per preregistration trainee. What is the point in the government spending all that money and not getting employable pharmacists from it?

    However, I also agree with the statement that you should make yourself more employable. I mentioned that in another thread covering this topic. I think I said the joe bloggs standard students have to worry - but those who get a variety of placements, do extra curricular activities, and generally make their CV sexier don't have to worry.
    TigerSwift in your opinion can you actually see something being done in terms of capping student numbers, does the profession have the power or will BPSA motions lodged to cap numbers just remain as nothing by motions on a piece of paper?

    Students and pharmacists are worried about the job market, this was not the case 2-3 years ago and it is a big concern, especially after such a tough mentally and physically draining degree.

    Do you think that change will happen? Surely the pharamcy board should have nipped this in the bud a few years ago, the 3 new schools opening next year will really shoot up student and graduate numbers and make the job market even more difficult, isn't anybody doing something about this. If these motions and suggestions to cap schools is being said now , then why didn't the board batter their eyelids when these new schools were allowed to get ready to begin next year? surely alarm bells should have gone in terms of what this going to do in terms of vastly increasing an already increased number of pharmacists out there?
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by TigerSwift)
    I kind of agree and disagree with this. I think as a healthcare profession there should be controlled numbers - simply because the DoH funds £18,400 per preregistration trainee. What is the point in the government spending all that money and not getting employable pharmacists from it?

    However, I also agree with the statement that you should make yourself more employable. I mentioned that in another thread covering this topic. I think I said the joe bloggs standard students have to worry - but those who get a variety of placements, do extra curricular activities, and generally make their CV sexier don't have to worry.
    How about rather than limiting student numbers, making entry requirements more stringent? Or dare I say it, cut pre-reg funding? I'd say make the course more difficult but then I might not graduate. :-) Not that I'm against limiting student numbers, or that I think anything I said is something I want to see, I just want to play devil's advocate in this thread.

    I also believe in hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst. So how bad can it get, so that I know what to prepare for?
    • 4 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by oliviagunapalan)
    Alright! Thank you for the info.
    You're welcome

    (Original post by college80)
    TigerSwift in your opinion can you actually see something being done in terms of capping student numbers, does the profession have the power or will BPSA motions lodged to cap numbers just remain as nothing by motions on a piece of paper?

    Students and pharmacists are worried about the job market, this was not the case 2-3 years ago and it is a big concern, especially after such a tough mentally and physically draining degree.

    Do you think that change will happen? Surely the pharamcy board should have nipped this in the bud a few years ago, the 3 new schools opening next year will really shoot up student and graduate numbers and make the job market even more difficult, isn't anybody doing something about this. If these motions and suggestions to cap schools is being said now , then why didn't the board batter their eyelids when these new schools were allowed to get ready to begin next year? surely alarm bells should have gone in terms of what this going to do in terms of vastly increasing an already increased number of pharmacists out there?
    I am going to tackle this in parts - some answers you will like... others you may not.

    Over the past few years the BPSA has really increased how it rerepresents students and you can see this from searching BPSA in the search functions of the PJ Online and Chemist and Druggist websites. Recently they lobbied the GPhC for changes to the registration exam, and were successful; they are working with UKBA on VISA issues, and this is moving forward; and they were involved in putting pressure on reducing the fees for the preregistration training year.

    They also sit on the Modernising Pharmacy Careers (MPC) Programme Board - which is looking at overhauling undergraduate and postgraduate education. A report by the BPSA was one of the main pieces of evidence used to start MPC and they have been involved in the process ever since. If the MPC proposals for undergraduate education are agreed, the prereg year will be integrated into the degree. This will mean training places will have to be commissioned for each student therefore introducing a cap on numbers.

    It is slightly unfair to say that the boards of pharmacy haven't done anything. The BPSA and Pharmacists' Defense Association have been talking about student numbers for a while. However, without an official policy from the membership these organisations are restricted in what they fight for. If they had faught for a cap without the agreement of the membership they would have suffered a backlash and loss of representational power. The one problem, however, is that none of the bodies actually have any power to directly cap student numbers.
    - The RPS is a professional body and whilst it could publish guidance to unis on student numbers, there is nothing binding unis to follow that guidane.
    - The PDA could lobby for caps to student numbers, but as a trade union it is not 100% clear how effective this would be.
    - The BPSA will be able to lobby various organisations and have a very strong voice - but it isn't something that will be solved in a year or so.
    - Finally, the regulator for pharmacy, The GPhC, accredits courses but has no powers to caps student numbers.

    The main problem is the funding models for the pharmacy course. Medicine is funded by the NHS and therefore a set number of places are comissioned. However, pharmacy is not commissioned in the same way and nor is it funded by the NHS. This means it can be treated like any course and therefore any university can set up a pharmacy school as long as they meet GPhC criteria. A lot of universities see pharmacy as a lucritive course and therefore max out student numbers based on lecture theatre sizes.

    So as you can see, applying a cap involves a lot of people and won't be easy or soon. If MPC comes to fruition a cap will be imposed, but a lag time will be experienced. Therefore, the problem will still be with us for a while unless the pharmacy profession comes up with another model of practice - such as the two pharmacist pharmacy.


    (Original post by Maturestudent1)
    How about rather than limiting student numbers, making entry requirements more stringent? Or dare I say it, cut pre-reg funding? I'd say make the course more difficult but then I might not graduate. :-) Not that I'm against limiting student numbers, or that I think anything I said is something I want to see, I just want to play devil's advocate in this thread.

    I also believe in hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst. So how bad can it get, so that I know what to prepare for?
    Those are all good ideas. The one problem with cutting the prereg funding is this makes up the vast majority of the preregistration trainee's wage. Get rid of this... no wage?

    The entry requirements could be raised. But universities will lower them for individual people to fill the spaces. As mentioned above, the main university admissions staff want bums on seats.
    • 11 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by TigerSwift)

    Those are all good ideas. The one problem with cutting the prereg funding is this makes up the vast majority of the preregistration trainee's wage. Get rid of this... no wage?
    I hope pre-reg funding isn't cut. I have heard it said that the cost of training and paying a pre-reg is more than the money the pharmacy gets for them. I really hope in five years time I am not doing my pre-reg year for nothing. I could not afford to work full time and not earn money.

    I do like the idea of incorporating the pre-reg training into the degree though. Two six month stints would be good. I wonder how long it takes for these changes to take place.
    • 3 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by TigerSwift)
    Over the past few years the BPSA has really increased how it rerepresents students and you can see this from searching BPSA in the search functions of the PJ Online and Chemist and Druggist websites. Recently they lobbied the GPhC for changes to the registration exam, and were successful; they are working with UKBA on VISA issues, and this is moving forward; and they were involved in putting pressure on reducing the fees for the preregistration training year.

    They also sit on the Modernising Pharmacy Careers (MPC) Programme Board - which is looking at overhauling undergraduate and postgraduate education. A report by the BPSA was one of the main pieces of evidence used to start MPC and they have been involved in the process ever since. If the MPC proposals for undergraduate education are agreed, the prereg year will be integrated into the degree. This will mean training places will have to be commissioned for each student therefore introducing a cap on numbers.

    It is slightly unfair to say that the boards of pharmacy haven't done anything. The BPSA and Pharmacists' Defense Association have been talking about student numbers for a while. However, without an official policy from the membership these organisations are restricted in what they fight for. If they had faught for a cap without the agreement of the membership they would have suffered a backlash and loss of representational power. The one problem, however, is that none of the bodies actually have any power to directly cap student numbers.
    - The RPS is a professional body and whilst it could publish guidance to unis on student numbers, there is nothing binding unis to follow that guidane.
    - The PDA could lobby for caps to student numbers, but as a trade union it is not 100% clear how effective this would be.
    - The BPSA will be able to lobby various organisations and have a very strong voice - but it isn't something that will be solved in a year or so.
    - Finally, the regulator for pharmacy, The GPhC, accredits courses but has no powers to caps student numbers.

    The main problem is the funding models for the pharmacy course. Medicine is funded by the NHS and therefore a set number of places are comissioned. However, pharmacy is not commissioned in the same way and nor is it funded by the NHS. This means it can be treated like any course and therefore any university can set up a pharmacy school as long as they meet GPhC criteria. A lot of universities see pharmacy as a lucritive course and therefore max out student numbers based on lecture theatre sizes.

    So as you can see, applying a cap involves a lot of people and won't be easy or soon. If MPC comes to fruition a cap will be imposed, but a lag time will be experienced. Therefore, the problem will still be with us for a while unless the pharmacy profession comes up with another model of practice - such as the two pharmacist pharmacy.




    Those are all good ideas. The one problem with cutting the prereg funding is this makes up the vast majority of the preregistration trainee's wage. Get rid of this... no wage?

    The entry requirements could be raised. But universities will lower them for individual people to fill the spaces. As mentioned above, the main university admissions staff want bums on seats.
    This is all very interesting. I never really knew a lot of this. Thank you for highlighting the dynamics that revolve around the various pharmacy bodies.

    Pharmacy also seems to be the oddity among healthcare courses, such that a large portion of the graduates enter employment with private bodies (Pharmacy chains, pharmaceutical companies, self employment etc) with only a smaller portion going into NHS.

    Would it be possible for the GPhC to add entry requirements into the pharmacy school criteria? From what I understand, they tell the schools what it is they must teach so couldn't they also say before they undertake the pharmacy course they need to show a good grasp of of particular subjects and get specific grades to prove it? By raising the entry criteria you also restrict either the number that enter or at least the academic quality of those that enter the profession.
    • 11 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Maturestudent1)

    Would it be possible for the GPhC to add entry requirements into the pharmacy school criteria? By raising the entry criteria you also restrict either the number that enter or at least the academic quality of those that enter the profession.
    Isn't it competitive enough already? If they made it much harder they could skip first year and turn it into a 3yr course, lol.

    Maybe they should put an age restriction on it and only let people over 21 apply

Reply

Submit reply

Register

Thanks for posting! You just need to create an account in order to submit the post
  1. this can't be left blank
    that username has been taken, please choose another Forgotten your password?

    this is what you'll be called on TSR

  2. this can't be left blank
    this email is already registered. Forgotten your password?

    never shared and never spammed

  3. this can't be left blank

    6 characters or longer with both numbers and letters is safer

  4. this can't be left empty
    your full birthday is required
  1. By completing the slider below you agree to The Student Room's terms & conditions and site rules

  2. Slide the button to the right to create your account

    Slide to join now Processing…

    You don't slide that way? No problem.

Updated: August 2, 2013
Article updates
Useful resources
Reputation gems:
You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.