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Career and Education Opportunities for Pharmacists in Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for pharmacists. About 5,990 people are currently employed as pharmacists in Massachusetts. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 19% to 7,110 people employed. This is better than the national trend for pharmacists, which sees this job pool growing by about 17.0% over the next eight years. In general, pharmacists compound and dispense medications following prescriptions issued by physicians, dentists, or other authorized medical practitioners.

Income for pharmacists is about $46 hourly or $97,360 yearly on average in Massachusetts. Nationally, their income is about $51 hourly or $106,410 per year. Incomes for pharmacists are better than in the overall category of Pharmacy in Massachusetts, and better than the overall Pharmacy category nationally. Jobs in this field include: outpatient pharmacy manager, apothecary, and hospital pharmacist.

There are 151 schools of higher education in the Boston area, including three within twenty-five miles of Boston where you can get a degree to start your career as a pharmacist. The most common level of education for pharmacists is a first professional degree. You can expect to spend two years studying to be a pharmacist if you already have a Bachelor's degree, or about six years starting with a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Pharmacist

Pharmacist video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, pharmacists compound and dispense medications following prescriptions issued by physicians, dentists, or other authorized medical practitioners.

Pharmacists furnish data and advice regarding drug interactions, side effects, dosage and proper medication storage. They also maintain records, such as pharmacy files, patient profiles, charge system files, inventories, control records for radioactive nuclei, and registries of poisons and controlled drugs. Equally important, pharmacists have to inspect prescriptions to assure accuracy, to ascertain the needed ingredients, and to review their suitability. They are often called upon to order and purchase pharmaceutical supplies and drugs, maintaining stock and storing and handling it properly. They are expected to dispense medications as prescribed by doctors and dentists. Finally, pharmacists offer health promotion and prevention efforts, for example, training people to use devices such as blood pressure or diabetes monitors.

Every day, pharmacists are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they read and understand documents and reports.

It is important for pharmacists to formulate and maintain processes for mixing and labeling pharmaceuticals, in line with policy and legal requirements, to insure quality and proper disposal. They are often called upon to analyze prescribing trends to track patient compliance and to inhibit excessive usage or harmful interactions. They also collaborate with other health care professionals to develop and evaluate the quality and effectiveness of drugs and drug regimens, providing advice on drug applications and characteristics. They are sometimes expected to assess the identity, strength and purity of medications. Somewhat less frequently, pharmacists are also expected to teach pharmacy students serving as interns in preparation for their graduation or licensure.

and work in hospitals or for Health Management Organizations (HMOs), dispensing prescriptions, serving as a medical team consultants, or specializing in specific drug therapy areas such as oncology or nuclear pharmacotherapy. And finally, they sometimes have to publish educational data for other pharmacists or patients.

Like many other jobs, pharmacists must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Boston include:

  • Medical Laboratory Technician. Perform routine medical laboratory tests for the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May work under the supervision of a medical technologist.
  • Medical Laboratory Technologist. Perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May train or supervise staff.
  • Nuclear Medical Technologist. Prepare, administer, and measure radioactive isotopes in therapeutic, diagnostic, and tracer studies utilizing a variety of radioisotope equipment. Prepare stock solutions of radioactive materials and calculate doses to be administered by radiologists. Subject patients to radiation. Execute blood volume, red cell survival, and fat absorption studies following standard laboratory techniques.
  • Pharmacist Technician. Prepare medications under the direction of a pharmacist. May measure, mix, and record amounts and dosages of medications.
  • Physician Assistant. Provide healthcare services typically performed by a physician, under the supervision of a physician. Conduct complete physicals, provide treatment, and counsel patients. May, in some cases, prescribe medication. Must graduate from an accredited educational program for physician assistants.
  • Respiratory Therapist. Assess, treat, and care for patients with breathing disorders. Assume primary responsibility for all respiratory care modalities, including the supervision of respiratory therapy technicians. Initiate and conduct therapeutic procedures; maintain patient records; and select, assemble, and operate equipment.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Pharmacist Training

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences - Boston, MA

Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, 179 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02115-5896. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences is a small college located in Boston, Massachusetts. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,903 students and an admission rate of 79%. Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences has 5 areas of study related to Pharmacist. They are:

  • Pharmacy, doctor's degree which graduated 461 students in 2008.
  • Pharmacy Administration & Pharmacy Policy & Regulatory Affairs, master's degree which graduated 16 students in 2008.
  • Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Industrial & Physical Pharmacy & Cosmetic Sciences, master's degree and doctor's degree.
  • Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Administration, Other Specialties, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated forty-two, zero, and zero students respectively in 2008.

Tufts University - Medford, MA

Tufts University, , Medford, MA 02155-5555. Tufts University is a large university located in Medford, Massachusetts. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 9,821 students and an admission rate of 25%. Tufts University has a doctor's degree program in Pharmaceutics and Drug Design which graduated two students in 2008.

Northeastern University - Boston, MA

Northeastern University, 360 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115-5000. Northeastern University is a large university located in Boston, Massachusetts. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 25,368 students and an admission rate of 35%. Northeastern University has 6 areas of study related to Pharmacist. They are:

  • Pharmacy, bachelor's degree and professional degree which graduated zero and 107 students respectively in 2008.
  • Pharmaceutics and Drug Design, master's degree and doctor's degree which graduated thirty-nine and nine students respectively in 2008.
  • Medicinal and Pharmaceutical Chemistry, master's degree.
  • Clinical and Industrial Drug Development, master's degree and post-master's certificate which graduated thirty-five and zero students respectively in 2008.
  • Clinical, Hospital, & Managed Care Pharmacy, master's degree.
  • Pharmacy, Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Administration, Other Specialties, postbaccalaureate certificate and post-master's certificate which graduated two and zero students respectively in 2008.

LICENSES

PHARMACIST

Licensing agency: Board of Registration in Pharmacy
Address: 239 Causeway Street, Boston, MA 02114

Phone: (617) 727-9953
Website: Board of Registration in Pharmacy

LOCATION INFORMATION: Boston, Massachusetts

Boston, Massachusetts
Boston, Massachusetts photo by Ahonc

Boston is situated in Suffolk County, Massachusetts. It has a population of over 609,023, which has grown by 3.4% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Boston, 136, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Boston are valued at $216,200 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, twenty-three new homes were constructed in Boston, down from forty-eight the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Boston are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, educational services, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 29 minutes. More than 35.6% of Boston residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 15.3%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Boston is 8.2%, which is less than Massachusetts's average of 8.4%.

The percentage of Boston residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.0%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Brighton Congregational Church, Leslie Lindsay Chapel and Universalist Meeting House are some of the churches located in Boston. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Episcopal Church.

Boston is home to the Metropolitan Water Works Pumping Stations and the Mystic Pier 1 as well as Schoolboy Stadium and Liberty Square. Shopping centers in the area include Legion Shopping Center, Longwood Galleria Shopping Center and Neponset Circle Shopping Center. Visitors to Boston can choose from Federalist Restaurant, Eco-Logical Solutions and Omni Parker Hotel for temporary stays in the area.