Salary of Pharmacists in Nigeria 2021: The medical profession is a well lucrative profession in Nigeria, but however the multiplicity of challenges facing the health sector today such as lack of equipment’s, brain drain, shortage of qualified medical personnel’s, amongst other factors prevalent in Nigeria has led to instability in the guarantee of a job placement after school. Nevertheless, Pharmacy remains the one field of the medical profession which nearly guarantees a high tendency of securing a job after school. Hence, it is a profession desirous by many in Nigeria and likewise lucrative too.
This Article therefore examines the profession as a whole and the salary of pharmacists in Nigeria.
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Table of Content
Who is a Pharmacist?
For clarity of the subject matter, a definition is imperative. By way of definition, a pharmacist is a trained and qualified Health professional who specializes in the use, testing, storing, preserving, and provision of drugs. They prescribe medications and fill prescriptions issued by the doctor, and they are also responsible for supplying quality drugs to patients, dispensing medical remedies to sickness and disease, review of medications which patients have been taking prior, advising patients about drugs and how to take them, and supervising the production of drugs and preparation of medicine.
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How to become a Pharmacist in Nigeria
Becoming a pharmacist in Nigeria is not a bed of roses. However, it is neither difficult. To become a pharmacist in Nigeria such a person must:
1. Pass the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) and the Joint Admissions and Matriculations board examination (JAMB).
This is the first step to becoming a pharmacist in Nigeria. To be said to have passed the WASSCE, you must have attained a credit pass in English Language, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology. While to be said to pass JAMB, you must have attained a minimum score of 200 in your JAMB subject combination of English, Physics, Biology, and Chemistry.
These two external examinations must be passed simultaneously, and if that so be the case you will get admission into your preferred University to study Pharmacy.
2. Pass through the University: Upon getting admission to study pharmacy, you are expected and required to successfully pass through the University, and this University must be a University accredited for by the Pharmacists Council of Nigeria for training pharmacists in Nigeria.
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3. Upon passing through an accredited University and completing core courses such as Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Pharmacognosy, Pharmaceutics, Pharmacology, Clinical Pharmacy and Biopharmacy, and Pharmacy practice and management, you will earn a Bachelor of Pharmacy (B. Pharm) degree or Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm D) as the case maybe in some schools.
4. After obtaining this degree, you will be inducted into the profession by the Pharmacist Council of Nigeria (PCN), the statutory body responsible for regulating and controlling Pharmacy education, practice, and training in Nigeria.
5. After which you must undergo a one year compulsory Internship program, wherein you will be placed to practice under the supervision of a registered pharmacist.
6. After completing this Internship program, you must undertake and pass the pre-registration examination for Pharmacists and also undergo the compulsory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
Upon the fulfillment of all these requirements, you will be registered and licensed to practice as a Pharmacist in Nigeria. Thereafter you will be entitled to receive a salary in any job you may find as a pharmacist in Nigeria.
Salary Structure of Pharmacists in Nigeria
The salary structure of a pharmacist in Nigeria differs respectively on your place of work either as a Pharmacist in a Government hospital, a Pharmacist in a Private hospital or a Pharmacist who is self-employed. For the purposes of this work, we shall concern ourselves with the salary of pharmacists working in Federal and Private hospitals.
Pharmacists in Federal Hospital
The salary of a pharmacist in a Federal hospital is regulated by the Consolidated Health Salary Structure (COHESS) managed by the National salaries and wages commission in Nigeria.
According to the Consolidated Health Salary Structure:
A low level pharmacist earns 70, 000 – 160,000 Naira
A mid-level Pharmacist earns 160,000 – 400, 000 Naira
A well experienced pharmacist in a federal hospital earns 450,000 naira above.
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Pharmacists in Private Hospital
The Salary of a pharmacist in a Private hospital is regulated by the board of directors or the owner of such hospital. Hence, there is no definite Salary structure in a Private Hospital as obtainable in a Federal hospital, as salary differs based on the Private hospital and a couple of other factors. However, based on an aggregate of Research, the salary structure in a Private hospital are as follows:
An entry-level pharmacist earns 40,000 – 120,000 Naira
A mid-level pharmacist earns 120,000 – 250,000 Naira
An experienced pharmacist earns 250,000 Naira and above.
Determinants of The Salary of Pharmacists
While we can agree from the above that there is no static salary structure for Pharmacists in Nigeria, the factors which determine the definite salary of a Pharmacist in Nigeria are as follows:
a. Experience: Experience is a major determinant of the salary of a Pharmacist in Nigeria. As elucidated in this article, the higher the level of experience, the higher the salary and vice versa. Hence, to determine your definite salary as a Pharmacist in Nigeria, it must be done with respect to your level of experience and place of work.
b. Place of work: This is another major determinant of the salary of a pharmacist in Nigeria, as in most cases salaries differ from one place of work to another. A pharmacist may work in a Federal Hospital, Private hospital, Companies, School, other institutions, or maybe self-employed. Save for pharmacist working in Federal hospital whose salary are regulated and defined by CONHESS.
The salary of a pharmacist in other place of work is not definite, and such salary may just be determined by your level of experience and place of work, as some work places particularly Companies or Organizations may be paying considerably very high even more than some federal hospitals, well some others may not be paying as much.
c. Qualification: Qualification matters a bunch particularly for pharmacists in the Academicals arena. As a pharmacist with more qualification for example a Professor will surely earn more than a pharmacists with just Ph.D., Masters, or Bachelor degree as the case maybe.
d. Expertise: While you may have the requisite level of experience, and qualification that does not necessarily make you a top notch expert in the field of pharmacy. Being a top notch expert in the field of pharmacy means that you will be sought after because of not just your experience, but knowledge, innovations, and achievements in the field of pharmacy in Nigeria.
An expert in this field earns a very considerably high salary just like the likes of Dr. Stella Okoli (Founder Emor pharmaceutical), Pharm. Elijah Mohammed, Prof Femi Oyewo Nkem, Pharm. Ifeanyi Atueyi, Pharm. Ahmed Yakasai, Pharm. Adelusi-Adeluyi, and a host of others who have established themselves as experts in the field of Pharmacy.
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In conclusion, it is instructive to note that in addition to the aforementioned Salary Structure, pharmacists in Nigeria usually earn other allowances and bonus. Thus, establishing it as a well lucrative profession in Nigeria as earlier stated in this article. Furthermore, in the case of pharmacist who are self-employed, their salary is determined by their profit from their pharmaceutical store, company or other ventures, and this is very lucrative provided your business is flourishing well. This is furnished by the fact self-employed pharmacists are the richest in Nigeria.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ChMC, is a Law Student and a Certified Mediator/Conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a Developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is bent on changing the legal profession by building Web and Mobile Apps that will make legal research a lot easier.