FAZyboy
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#1
I have been a Pharmacist for 3 years and spent in excess of £40k to become one.

Its been the biggest mistake of my lifetime. Whilst I enjoyed the course, I wish I knew how oversaturated the profession is, how awful the job was and how poor the salary is.

You will spend the best part of 9 to 10 hours a day standing. You barely get a lunch break and if your lucky you'll have 15 mins to quickly eat a sandwich. You will be overworked and underpaid.Your constantly under pressure to work faster and faster. You are a retail employee not a clinician using only a fraction of your clinical knowledge and be expected to hand out fragrance vouchers and advertise 2 for 1 deals.

The career is target driven you will be judged by the number of sales made and not patient care provided. The market is so oversaturated jobs can be hard to find and the pay is dwindilling at an exponential rate. Thus you are left with the option of no work or working for the bare minimum.

My peers are finding work hard to come by with rates at their lowest ever. Many of whom also work as uber drivers and supermarket staff to make up for oversaturation. With more and more pharmacy schools opening selling you a false dream and the inception of online pharmcies the situation will only get worse.

I have had no choice but to leave the profession and undertake training as a science teacher.

Heed now, avoid!
7
reply
SoulfulTwist
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#2
Report 1 week ago
#2
If you were to work in a hospital as a pharmacist rather than at a chemist/pharmacy you'd get to use more of what you've learnt and would be constantly learning. Maybe you need a change of scene.
7
reply
Anonymous.22
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#3
Report 1 week ago
#3
(Original post by FAZyboy)
I have been a Pharmacist for 3 years and spent in excess of £40k to become one.

Its been the biggest mistake of my lifetime. Whilst I enjoyed the course, I wish I knew how oversaturated the profession is, how awful the job was and how poor the salary is.

You will spend the best part of 9 to 10 hours a day standing. You barely get a lunch break and if your lucky you'll have 15 mins to quickly eat a sandwich. You will be overworked and underpaid.Your constantly under pressure to work faster and faster. You are a retail employee not a clinician using only a fraction of your clinical knowledge and be expected to hand out fragrance vouchers and advertise 2 for 1 deals.

The career is target driven you will be judged by the number of sales made and not patient care provided. The market is so oversaturated jobs can be hard to find and the pay is dwindilling at an exponential rate. Thus you are left with the option of no work or working for the bare minimum.

My peers are finding work hard to come by with rates at their lowest ever. Many of whom also work as uber drivers and supermarket staff to make up for oversaturation. With more and more pharmacy schools opening selling you a false dream and the inception of online pharmcies the situation will only get worse.

I have had no choice but to leave the profession and undertake training as a science teacher.

Heed now, avoid!
What if you do an independent prescribing course and become a clinical pharmacist working in a GP???
5
reply
FAZyboy
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#4
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#4
(Original post by Anonymous.22)
What if you do an independent prescribing course and become a clinical pharmacist working in a GP???
The IP course requires a DMP which is difficult to source. Hence why most pharmacist are not Prescribers .

Even then having spoken to peers your indemnity cover becomes very expensive and the remuneration for most is not worth the risk. Hence i know many pharmacist IP who work without their prescribing qualification.
Last edited by FAZyboy; 1 week ago
0
reply
FAZyboy
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#5
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#5
(Original post by SoulfulTwist)
If you were to work in a hospital as a pharmacist rather than at a chemist/pharmacy you'd get to use more of what you've learnt and would be constantly learning. Maybe you need a change of scene.
The vast majority of pharmacists work in a pharmacy accounting for more than 80% of the profession.
Hospital pharmacists have a lower starting salary than community pharmacists
0
reply
Zarek
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#6
Report 1 week ago
#6
A science degree is also a gateway in to many professions. Agree that the upfront cost of getting a degree is now ridiculous.
0
reply
MKaur18
Badges: 21
Rep:
?
#7
Report 1 week ago
#7
(Original post by FAZyboy)
The IP course requires a DMP which is difficult to source. Hence why most pharmacist are not Prescribers .

Even then having spoken to peers your indemnity cover becomes very expensive and the remuneration for most is not worth the risk. Hence i know many pharmacist IP who work without their prescribing qualification.
What do you mean work without their qualification????
0
reply
Claremont4ever
Badges: 9
Rep:
?
#8
Report 1 week ago
#8
My experience regarding being a pharmacist in the community is the opposite of yours, and I really love all aspects of being a community pharmacist. However, I do think you have made the right decision to leave a career you are not happy in. There are a few frustrated pharmacists out there who tell gory stories about being a pharmacist, but yet, still choose to remain in a career they obviously do not like. You are not one of them. Good luck in your future career.
1
reply
ajj2000
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#9
Report 1 week ago
#9
(Original post by FAZyboy)
I have been a Pharmacist for 3 years and spent in excess of £40k to become one.

Its been the biggest mistake of my lifetime. Whilst I enjoyed the course, I wish I knew how oversaturated the profession is, how awful the job was and how poor the salary is.

You will spend the best part of 9 to 10 hours a day standing. You barely get a lunch break and if your lucky you'll have 15 mins to quickly eat a sandwich. You will be overworked and underpaid.Your constantly under pressure to work faster and faster. You are a retail employee not a clinician using only a fraction of your clinical knowledge and be expected to hand out fragrance vouchers and advertise 2 for 1 deals.

The career is target driven you will be judged by the number of sales made and not patient care provided. The market is so oversaturated jobs can be hard to find and the pay is dwindilling at an exponential rate. Thus you are left with the option of no work or working for the bare minimum.

My peers are finding work hard to come by with rates at their lowest ever. Many of whom also work as uber drivers and supermarket staff to make up for oversaturation. With more and more pharmacy schools opening selling you a false dream and the inception of online pharmcies the situation will only get worse.

I have had no choice but to leave the profession and undertake training as a science teacher.

Heed now, avoid!
How much do you earn and for how many hours?
1
reply
thisisfunny
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#10
Report 1 week ago
#10
(Original post by Zarek)
A science degree is also a gateway in to many professions. Agree that the upfront cost of getting a degree is now ridiculous.
Pharmacy is not a flexible degree - I’ve tried to get into other science based entry level roles (having gained relevant work experience) and have been unsuccessful Same as my peers and friends. We basically need a PhD which I have been unsuccessful in getting for 2 years now so I’m changing to another (actual) NHS profession and forgetting my dream to work in pharmaceutical science/chemistry.
1
reply
FAZyboy
Badges: 4
Rep:
?
#11
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#11
(Original post by Claremont4ever)
My experience regarding being a pharmacist in the community is the opposite of yours, and I really love all aspects of being a community pharmacist. However, I do think you have made the right decision to leave a career you are not happy in. There are a few frustrated pharmacists out there who tell gory stories about being a pharmacist, but yet, still choose to remain in a career they obviously do not like. You are not one of them. Good luck in your future career.
Im glad you have had a positive experience.

Whilst your outlook is positive, no pharmacist can deny the remuneration package is dwindiling, hours are long and the market continues to become more saturated.

Pharmacy schools are selling a false dream and wishful thinking would only persuade prospective students to enter pharmacy school.
0
reply
Sarah H.
Badges: 9
Rep:
?
#12
Report 1 week ago
#12
(Original post by thisisfunny)
Pharmacy is not a flexible degree - I’ve tried to get into other science based entry level roles (having gained relevant work experience) and have been unsuccessful Same as my peers and friends. We basically need a PhD which I have been unsuccessful in getting for 2 years now so I’m changing to another (actual) NHS profession and forgetting my dream to work in pharmaceutical science/
You are absolutely right.

Pharmacy is not traditionally a flexible degree but one tailored to produce pharmacists who will work either in community pharmacies (CP) or hospital in a roughly 3:1 ratio. A handful will find employment in industry.

The Pharmacy degree is indeed a sound general science degree BUT it now could be argued that it is too generalised and does not lend itself as a gateway to employment as anything other than a pharmacist. This is now an important issue.

For reasons outlined here previously it clear that CP is a slowly sinking ship with less and less to offer graduates. There have been some very recent developments that are accelerating the process. Pharmacy grads in the immediate future will likely struggle.

(I posted below a couple of weeks ago “a future for Community Pharmacy”. You may want to read and think).

Take care...
Last edited by Sarah H.; 1 week ago
2
reply
0895
Badges: 9
Rep:
?
#13
Report 1 week ago
#13
(Original post by Claremont4ever)
My experience regarding being a pharmacist in the community is the opposite of yours, and I really love all aspects of being a community pharmacist. However, I do think you have made the right decision to leave a career you are not happy in. There are a few frustrated pharmacists out there who tell gory stories about being a pharmacist, but yet, still choose to remain in a career they obviously do not like. You are not one of them. Good luck in your future career.
If you are past about 30/35, and have a partner/kids/mortgage/car payments/student loans, etc, it can be very hard to change career.
Almost impossible for some to do another degree due to the need to pay the bills.
I'm sure there are many pharmacists who are unhappy who would love to change career but the simple facts of life get in the way.
It is much easier the younger you are and if you are single and have no kids so you can move around the country or abroad for new opportunities.
Once you start to collect life's baggage as you get older it gets much harder. So many do not CHOOSE to remain, they would leave tomorrow if someone gave them a couple hundred thou to help, they HAVE to remain to pay the mortgage basically.
I have a colleague who 'has it all', married, kids, big house, 2 nice posh cars, 50k a year, and he hates his job as a community pharmacist. But as he is late 30s, he says there is no way he can do anything else right now as he has to earn 50k to pay his mortgage and take care of his family and the lifestyle they expect. You could argue he could downsize, but how do you tell kids with their own rooms they will have to share, they will have to give up their iPhones and 2 holidays abroad a year, they will have to cut down to one car, no more piano lessons and dance classes so daddy can go back to Uni or whatever. Most people won't do that for their kids so they continue to work in their soul destroying job, and this isn't only in pharmacy, it could be any job.
Hence, why many older pharmacists come on here to point out the reality of the job vs. the basically 'lies' the Unis tell you about the 'bright clinical future' that will never happen.
Also, now AMAZON have trade-marked Amazon Pharmacy UK, things are going to get a lot worse over the next decade or 2 as Amazon disrupt the market.
I hope anyone choosing pharmacy this year goes back over the history of Amazon starting out 25yrs ago selling books and how they killed off all the small independent book shops, and then apply that to how they have the potential to destroy the community pharmacy network. And no, they don't need to worry about profit, they can remain solvent much longer than Mr/s Independent or a small chain can.
This is a very worrying time for community pharmacy, and I really hope 6th formers don't walk into a pharmacy degree with their eyes wide shut as so many do, especially through Clearing, and Clearing will be brutal this year, taking on many, many students who are unsuitable academically just to fill places. I imagine some places will go as low as CCD or even CDD and throw on some extra science catch-up classes. This will result in a large failure rate in the pre-reg exam of 2025, and those that do pass could be qualifying into a new Amazon pharmacy world.
I apologise for the misery, I really do. But I don't think talking up pharmacy is going to help. Especially what the OP posts about the IP qualification which many in pharmacy thought would be its saviour, but it seems not.
4
reply
161BMW
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#14
Report 1 week ago
#14
(Original post by 0895)
If you are past about 30/35, and have a partner/kids/mortgage/car payments/student loans, etc, it can be very hard to change career.
Almost impossible for some to do another degree due to the need to pay the bills.
I'm sure there are many pharmacists who are unhappy who would love to change career but the simple facts of life get in the way.
It is much easier the younger you are and if you are single and have no kids so you can move around the country or abroad for new opportunities.
Once you start to collect life's baggage as you get older it gets much harder. So many do not CHOOSE to remain, they would leave tomorrow if someone gave them a couple hundred thou to help, they HAVE to remain to pay the mortgage basically.
I have a colleague who 'has it all', married, kids, big house, 2 nice posh cars, 50k a year, and he hates his job as a community pharmacist. But as he is late 30s, he says there is no way he can do anything else right now as he has to earn 50k to pay his mortgage and take care of his family and the lifestyle they expect. You could argue he could downsize, but how do you tell kids with their own rooms they will have to share, they will have to give up their iPhones and 2 holidays abroad a year, they will have to cut down to one car, no more piano lessons and dance classes so daddy can go back to Uni or whatever. Most people won't do that for their kids so they continue to work in their soul destroying job, and this isn't only in pharmacy, it could be any job.
Hence, why many older pharmacists come on here to point out the reality of the job vs. the basically 'lies' the Unis tell you about the 'bright clinical future' that will never happen.
Also, now AMAZON have trade-marked Amazon Pharmacy UK, things are going to get a lot worse over the next decade or 2 as Amazon disrupt the market.
I hope anyone choosing pharmacy this year goes back over the history of Amazon starting out 25yrs ago selling books and how they killed off all the small independent book shops, and then apply that to how they have the potential to destroy the community pharmacy network. And no, they don't need to worry about profit, they can remain solvent much longer than Mr/s Independent or a small chain can.
This is a very worrying time for community pharmacy, and I really hope 6th formers don't walk into a pharmacy degree with their eyes wide shut as so many do, especially through Clearing, and Clearing will be brutal this year, taking on many, many students who are unsuitable academically just to fill places. I imagine some places will go as low as CCD or even CDD and throw on some extra science catch-up classes. This will result in a large failure rate in the pre-reg exam of 2025, and those that do pass could be qualifying into a new Amazon pharmacy world.
I apologise for the misery, I really do. But I don't think talking up pharmacy is going to help. Especially what the OP posts about the IP qualification which many in pharmacy thought would be its saviour, but it seems not.
This

I’m not a pharmacist but choose a career wisely guys one that you will enjoy and make money. Even a job that pays decent can get boring in the end. The older it gets the harder it is to transition.
1
reply
Liz94
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#15
Report 1 week ago
#15
I have to pitch in here because of how doom and gloom this all is.
Yes I’m a hospital pharmacist so I understand that’s the smaller amount of pharmacists. However in the north-east there are SO MANY opportunities for hospital pharmacists. We have band 8s at 26-30 absolutely no problem.
I locum in community and I love it and get a great rate of pay. My colleagues from university do a mix of hospital and community across the country and the majority enjoy their role.

The expansion into GP practices is absolutely unprecedented every CCG here is crying out for their own pharmacist!
3
reply
user1616
Badges: 6
Rep:
?
#16
Report 1 week ago
#16
How about becoming a pharmaceutical rep? They make A LOT of money and my friend who is one loves her job to bits! She did pharmaceuticals at uni then moved into that side of things
0
reply
affect/effect
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#17
Report 1 week ago
#17
Just to clarify:
A pharmaceutical course doesn’t necessarily lead you to work in a pharmacy, right?
0
reply
Liz94
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#18
Report 1 week ago
#18
(Original post by affect/effect)
Just to clarify:
A pharmaceutical course doesn’t necessarily lead you to work in a pharmacy, right?
You have to specifically do an MPharm degree to become a pharmacist.
1
reply
affect/effect
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#19
Report 1 week ago
#19
(Original post by Liz94)
You have to specifically do an MPharm degree to become a pharmacist.
Ah, great. Thank you!
0
reply
0895
Badges: 9
Rep:
?
#20
Report 1 week ago
#20
(Original post by user1616)
How about becoming a pharmaceutical rep? They make A LOT of money and my friend who is one loves her job to bits! She did pharmaceuticals at uni then moved into that side of things
I looked at this in the 90s and went for lots of interviews but no company seemed keen to have a pharmacist. It was all the pure sciences they took. I used to ask reps what their degree was in and it ranged from things like biology, to biochemistry to sports science. Before NICE guidelines from the late 90s, there used to be lots of reps as GPs had much more range on what they could prescribe, there were few guidelines, but as we got to the mid 'noughties' and towards 2010, reps seemed to disappear or become more educational specialists, rather than selling the products. In the 90s, it was common to see a rep nearly every day. Now you are lucky to see one every month or two.
Yes, it can be very lucrative and can offer opportunities across the UK and sometimes abroad, but I only met one guy who did a pharmacy degree.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

How are you finding researching unis for 2021 entry?

I have been able to get all the information I need from online research (40)
20.2%
I have tried virtual events and found them useful (48)
24.24%
I have tried virtual events and did not find them useful (35)
17.68%
I would be interested in trying socially distanced or scaled down in person events (43)
21.72%
I want to but don't know where to start with researching unis for 2021 entry (17)
8.59%
I haven't started researching yet (15)
7.58%

Watched Threads

View All
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise