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Pharmacist: Canada’s Best Jobs 2016

The country's ageing population is creating lots of demand in healthcare, including for those who dispense medication and monitor patient health

UPDATED! Click here for 2017’s ranking of Canada’s Best Jobs » Canada’s Best Jobs 2016: The Top Jobs in Canada
Pharmacist Jobs — Canada’s Best Jobs

(Andy Sotiriou/Getty)

Median Salary: $99,840
Salary Growth (2009–2015): +9%
Total Employees: 32,300
Change in Employees (2009–2015): +38%

Job Description:

Dispensing medication and helping monitor patient health are the primary tasks that pharmacists undertake. The ranks of the profession in Canada have grown sharply in recent years, as seniors command a growing share of the country’s population. Demand in hospitals and community pharmacies is particularly high, and will persist over the next few years.

Job Qualifications:

A bachelor of science degree in pharmacy and practical training under a working pharmacist are a must to land a job. Additionally, you’ll need a licence issued by provincial authorities.


Pharmacists enjoy high pay and stability. You’ll be able to earn around $90,000 as soon as you begin practising, but salary progression for pharmacists has historically been slow—raises are few and far between.

Career Opportunity:

There is almost no unemployment in this occupation, according to Service Canada. Back in 2000, universities had to increase the number of annual admissions to their pharmacy programs, because there weren’t enough graduates to fill all the job openings. Since then, the number of graduates with bachelor’s degrees increased by 75% between 2001 and 2011 in Quebec, but it’s still too early to determine whether this is enough to meet the increased demand. Although there is no shortage of jobs in this field, most openings are located in small communities outside of major cities. Pharmacy graduates should be prepared to move to remote locations for employment.

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