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Old 01-21-2011, 10:27 AM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 19,673
What is the best company for a pharmacist to work for

Are there pharmacists or relatives of pharmacists here?

I know a pharmacist who is getting worried about the stress and extra workloads where he works, and he worries it will impact his health due to his age.

Does it vary by company (walgreens, rite-aid, walmart, cvs, etc) or does it vary more by store when it comes to things like stress and high workloads? Will all Wal-marts, Targets or Wal-greens be the same, or does it vary greatly by retail outlet?

Is there a difference between retail drug stores and health care settings (clinics, hospitals, nursing homes) for the workload, stress and stability?

Do any companies offer decent health insurance for workweeks in the 24-39 hour range, or do you need 40 hours to get health insurance?

What companies offer a stable 40 hour workweek w/o the person being called in on their off days?
Old 01-21-2011, 11:23 AM
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: The Dueling Grounds
Posts: 10,853
My father and his brother-in-law (my uncle) were pharmacists. We never really talked about it much but from what I gathered over the years it would seem that the biggest money/best benefits are in retail outlets but it's also the hardest work/most stressful. I think the work/stress-load depends not so much on the company but more where the store is: next to a retirement community, you're fucked; over in the nice part of town, not so bad. When he worked at a major hospital my father said the work was steady but never really that urgent; they basically worked at their own pace.

Bear in mind he worked at the hospital and retail like 40 years ago; he stopped doing that and became a pharmaceutical inspector for the state so he'd have more regular/normal hours.
Old 01-21-2011, 01:40 PM
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 9,787
My post will basically echo DC's.

Retail is a pressure cooker. You are paid a bit more, but you run your ass off filling orders, answering questions, answering the phone, cross-checking allergies, verifying safe doses, directing folks to the pantyhose display...your production is watched closely, and you are expected to be extremely productive.

Hospital settings are not exactly laid back, but you don't feel under the gun as much.

The pay, of course, is pretty good.

Old 01-21-2011, 02:01 PM
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 4,630
Retail sucks. From personal experience I would not recommend CVS, Rite Aid, or Walgreens. Hospital pay is creeping up to being at the point where it is very competitive with retail levels, plus you have a lot more opportunity to work hand in hand with physicians to determine the care for patients, versus retail where you are essentially forced to get screamed at for most of the day by idiots.
Old 01-21-2011, 02:18 PM
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,211
Yep, work in a hospital is what friends/relatives have said. That said, all of my friends/family that are pharmacists are women, with their spouses making more than they do. The lower pressure means they (inherently) value lower stress levels. Some have also recommended the (extremely few) family pharmacies remaining.

The best place to train is a family pharmacy or the least busy pharmacy possible; people who train in giant grocery store pharmacies learn nothing because the whole show is at a breakneck pace.
Old 01-21-2011, 02:32 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Conyers, GA, USA
Posts: 1,352
From my experience, the best place for a pharmacist to work is a grocery store pharmacy. They don't pressure the pharmacists as much to increase volume, and value customer service a little more.

But... probably the best place for a pharmacist to work is in academia, the pharmacists who teach at pharmacy schools have some of the lowest stress levels, and a set schedule... plus you get all the school breaks off.
Old 01-23-2011, 12:17 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Omaha, NE
Posts: 168
You might also see if there is a pharmacy benefits manager that runs a mail order pharmaceutical business in your area. My father in law owns one of those and, from what I hear, his employees LOVE their jobs. No public to deal with...still the pressures that come with being a pharmacist, but none of the retail issues.

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