Discount-chain Pharmacists among the lowest paid in industry: Report

Pharmacists in the nation’s biggest retail chains enjoy some of the lowest pay in the industry, according to a new report by Professional Pharmacists Australia.

The report, which collated the remuneration of over 1000 pharmacists across the country, found that pharmacists working for discount chains such as Chemist Warehouse, Discount Drug Store and My Chemist paid their staff at least $4 an hour less when compared to community pharmacies.

This extrapolates out to about $600 a month, according to Professional Pharmacists Australia president Dr. Geoff March.

“This report reveals that the wages of many pharmacists at discount chains have been cut to the bone,” Dr. March said.

And, with the hospital sector granting much higher pay for pharmacists, there is little incentive to encourage these professionals from entering the community pharmacy sector.

“Pharmacists working in hospitals and covered by enterprise bargaining agreements could expect a median salary up to $7,500 per year, or $8 an hour, higher than pharmacists working in community pharmacies,” said Dr. March.

“Enterprise bargaining also delivers the highest wages in the community pharmacy sector, with the National pharmacy chain’s agreement paying a pharmacist-in-charge almost $12 more per hour than one at Chemist Warehouse.”

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