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10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017

For all those young aspiring pharmacists out there, here are pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017. 

Pharmacists. Isn’t it great to be one? For starters, you are a medical specialist and your role in helping people get well is really important and valued. You get smiles of appreciation on a daily basis, don’t you? Secondly, you are not the least moved with competition as doctors. You know how they are always arguing over which field of medicine the takes greater precedence and is more significant than the others. Surgeons are usually in the highest esteem, as it appears (or perhaps the loudest). Nevertheless, nothing would be possible without the right prescribed medicine, and that’s where you jump in. Furthermore, there are lots of positions to choose from. American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy gives a few examples. You are eligible to work in retain chain community pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes, managed care organizations, colleges, schools or the pharmaceutical industry. Eventually, you may end up working for the federal government. All in all, your job gives you a lot of perspectives, and you can try your luck all over the world if you wish. Obviously, you do. What other reason would bring you to this article?

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017


It would also be a good time to mention the salary benefits. The average salary of a retail pharmacist is around $117,000 in the US. Its colleague, a clinical pharmacist, could be earning a bit less – about $105,000 per year. These are some pretty decent figures. If you want to find out more, check out the list of highest paying countries for pharmacists. By the way, one of the most popular countries for pharmacists is Switzerland. There are a couple of reasons why lots of people are trying to become a Switzerland pharmacist. First of all, there’s the average salary of $83,600, as told by Pharmacy Times. Even though you’ll be earning much more in the US, Switzerland is sometimes considered to be the best country for pharmacy jobs because only 4% of the pharmacists have over 20 years of experience. The majority have only 1 or 4 years of experience, which tells us there are always job opportunities for you and your colleagues. Moreover, not being the highest paid pharmacist in the world isn’t that important if you are living and working in the country which was proclaimed to have the highest quality of life regarding pollution, safety, traffic, and healthcare altogether.

After naming all these advantages, if you are about to graduate from high school, check our article on best undergraduate pharmacy schools in the US and start working on your dream. You will be able to earn a salary that is very competitive, and you must admit the job offers quite a few perks. On the downside, you will have to stand a lot during your work hours, regardless of whether a retail pharmacy or a lab is your place of work. Working with people is immensely rewarding, but it can be a nuisance if or when you encounter some rude customers.

Let’s see now which are the pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017. First, we asked who else but the FIP (International Pharmaceutical Federation) and read their report for 2015-2017. We learned that pharmacists are most urgently needed in African countries, especially one of them. You’ll find out later which one is infamous for this. We use the word “infamous” because the reason why so many African countries are in desperate need of pharmacists is that there are lots of poverty and HIV affected areas. One more piece of advice: whatever you do, don’t go to Armenia. They have the highest density of pharmacists in the world, so there is no use of sending them your CV.

Therefore, one way of doing research was checking which African countries need pharmacists the most, and we also found it at Businesslive. But if you are not so keen on going to this continent, don’t worry. Our second method is much more appealing. We checked which countries are offering work visas for this occupation, and there were quite a few in the highly developed part of the world. We roamed through Immigration New Zealand, NaukriGulf, CanadaVisa, and SBS to find the data. With the list of countries in need of pharmacists, we are also providing you with details on the particular country and some useful information about the pharmacist jobs there (e.g., the salary or types of pharmacists needed). Finally, we flipped through the Irish Times, ENCA, PharmacyChoice, FreeMalaysiaToday and last but not the least, PSC Govt Jobs.

The countries are listed in no particular order so that you could choose to your own preferences. After all, there are many factors which could influence your decision of working somewhere, such as climate, for example. No matter how different they may be in many aspects, they have one thing in common. These are all pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017.

10. Ireland

As it seems, the situation in Ireland is far from satisfying when it comes to the number of pharmacists. They are very much in demand since the number of students opting for this occupation is steadily decreasing, so there is a bit of panic about it. Some of the reasons include the excessive levels of administration and bureaucracy involved, combined with the realization that their colleagues in the US, UK or Canada have more freedom when it comes to the application of professional skills. All these are in your favor if you wish to work in the European Union. The Emerald Isle is all yours, apparently.

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017


9. Canada

We have already mentioned Canada, the number 9 on our list of pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017. Not only are they in demand of pharmacists, but the scope of practice has been extended so that you can even monitor patients with chronic illnesses, and you are allowed to renew and adjust their prescriptions. As you can see, your job here is not just handing the medicine over the counter. At the moment, Canada is looking for an amazing 1590 number of pharmacists to be employed all over the country. You’d better get going and apply for that visa!

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017

Iakov Filimonov/

8. New Zealand

Another country in demand of pharmacists and offering work visas is New Zealand. However, they aren’t in need of all pharmacists. Currently, the Kiwis are only interested in employing a Resident Medical Officer (Intern Pharmacist), whose job is to “diagnose, treat and prevent physical and mental disorders and injuries under suitable supervision.” If you are from Australia, it will be even easier to obtain a job opportunity in the neighborhood. Careers says that the demand for pharmacists is on the rise.

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017

Monkey Business Images/

7. Australia

Speak of the devil, here is the land down under. It is very hard to get their work visa, but feel free to apply if you are a pharmacist. The latest list for 2017-2018 has your name on it, so what are you waiting for? Hospital, industrial and retail pharmacist are pharmacist shortage areas for Australia.

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017


6. USA

Right now it takes only five years to become a pharmacist at college. We say “only” because pretty soon it is going to take you six years to complete once the rules are changed. The forecast is the USA will continue to be a pharmacist shortage country for quite some time – until 2020. In the meantime, you could say that there are from 7,000 to 10,000 unfilled pharmacy positions at any given time. Wonderful, isn’t it?

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017


5. Malaysia

There are over 31 million people in Malaysia, the next one on the list of pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017, and the population is only growing faster. That’s exactly why the ministry says they are aiming for one pharmacist for every  1,000-1,200 people. The current ratio is 1:1,600. No wonder they are in our list of  10 pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017Also, there is a shortage of pharmacists in all areas, from retail to industrial. JobStreet says Malaysia pharmacist salary was the highest among fresh graduates beginning to work.

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017

Dragon Images/

4. UAE

We are continuing our list of pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017 with the United Arab Emirates that is highly popular with many occupations because it offers competitive salaries. One factor which you should definitely remember is that there are many vacant positions for pharmacists without any previous experience. What is more, most jobs are located in the amazing cities of Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017

kurhan /

3. India

If you possess the right qualifications, you will find a job in India in no time. The government has just declared the urgent need for pharmaceutical professionals.

2. The South African Republic

The South African Republic is where the pharmacists are very much in demand. 12,000 of them, to be precise. That’s how many experts they need to meet international standards. Ideally, there should be 50 pharmacists to 100,000 people. South African drug companies are doing their best to compete with their counterparts in countries such as India and China, but it can’t be done without enough skilled workforce.10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017

1. Ethiopia

And here is the country that is without a doubt by far the most desperate among pharmacist shortage countries in need of pharmacists in 2017. The countries are in random order, but if there was a competition, Ethiopia would be the absolute winner. Do you remember that talk about the number of inhabitants and pharmacists? At the global level, the average number is 4,182 people per pharmacy. In Ethiopia, there are 130,385 people per pharmacy. As you can see, saying that Ethiopia is in need of pharmacists is an understatement. It is absolutely desperate for more medical staff.

10 Pharmacist Shortage Countries in Need of Pharmacists in 2017