As soon as the new millennium began, new pharmacy schools start popping up everywhere. Enrollment in already established schools had increased significantly. Marketing research said the need for pharmacists would grow exponentially. They were wrong!!
Yours truly, went to Pharmacy School for 5 years resulting in B.S. in Pharmacological Studies. In 2000, pharmacy schools elected to offer a mandatory 6-year program. Thereafter, pharmacists could now be called a Doctor of Pharmacy/Pharm. D. Before 2000, the Pharm. D. was an option.
There are currently 148 pharmacy schools in the U.S.* Since 2000, there was increase of over 40% in the number of new accredited colleges of pharmacy. In addition, thanks to the 2008 sub-prime mortgage fiasco, many elderly pharmacists are still hard at work.
Here in 2019, there are very few full-time positions in pharmacy. Salaries are tanking. Our hourly rates keep dropping in addition to other compensations. That’s of course if you can even find a part-time position and they usually come with no benefits. Any argument you have with your hourly rate and management points to the door saying there are many pharmacists that would gladly take your place. So, take it or leave it!!
Colleges need their curriculum revamped. The pharmacist must be trained to prescribe. This will drastically improve the health care system. Future physicians and pharmacists will work together starting during the educational process marrying educational talents and experiences for synergistic practices. Doctors would do what they do best, medical examinations, testing, analyzing the data and giving the diagnosis(s).
Cannabis education needs to begin now!! This will encourage the student to participate as part of a clinical research team that features particular chemvars of the botanical for treatment in a specified disease state. Federal approval of this plant is coming in the near future. Let’s get these teams ready by engaging our students with pertinent information and research into everything cannabis sativa.
Expanding courses that focus on data analysis (analytics). That’s where full-time positions currently exist.
Open up a private pharmacy. Offer everything that retail chain pharmacy doesn’t. An old friend of mine has 3 pharmacies, although its not easy, it will keep you out from under the corporate umbrella. Then you can determine your audience of patients. Send the unruly rest back to the corporate pharmacies.
Driving these solutions home requires stepping way out of your comfort zones. Rewards are given to those that take risks. Those rewards will allow society a much improved and less fragmented health care system. And, it will give pharmacists more rewarding opportunities playing their part in a better quality system.
Make it illegal for pharmacy schools to take monies from Corporate America under any circumstances. Corporate has and continues to degrade our profession. Take a look at the environment in many of the retail chains. Observe how they treat the pharmacists and ancillary staff. If you disagree, then consider yourself lucky. You are part of a rare environment. Treasure that!!
Caveat: There are still some exceptional companies remaining that wear the corporate hat. One that I’m familiar with is Costco. Any others your familiar with please feel free to send me a note.
**Think about why the United States is 27th on the list of countries for life expectancy. ** And per capita, we spend more $$$$ ($9,237 from 2016 survey published in 2017) than any other country on Earth for health care.*** Why??
Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.