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Pharmacist salaries go up, many into six digits


NEW YORK The pay rate for pharmacists has increased by a significant amount compared with numbers from 2007, according to the 2008 Pharmacy Compensation Survey from Mercer.

According to the survey, the average salary for a retail staff pharmacist, including his/her bonus, is $108,700, a 5.8 percent from the $102,800 average from 2007. Other pharmacists also experienced a year-over-year increase in pay including hospital pharmacists, who saw an increase of 6.5 percent and clinical pharmacists, who saw an increase of 5.2 percent. The position of pharmacy team manager shows the strongest growth in pay, up 8.1 percent.

The highest average pay was found in San Jose, California, where pharmacists were averaging $118,000 a year, while the lowest average pay was $97,200 in Omaha, Nebraska.

The survey, conducted semi-annually, contains detailed information on pay levels and pay practices for pharmacy personnel reported in more than 380 metropolitan areas across the United States. Survey participants include major retail pharmacy operators (drug store and supermarket chains) as well as mail-order/online pharmacy firms and hospitals/health care systems. The survey reflects data submitted by 172 organizations covering more than 242,120 pharmacy employees in 23 different jobs. Supporters of the survey include retailers like CVS, Kroger’s, Longs, Rite Aid, and Walgreens.

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