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AIBU?

To think most people have no idea how much a pharmacy dispenser earns?

228 replies

Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 20:22

Following on from another thread I’ve seen today about TA’s I was wondering if people had any idea how much a pharmacy dispenser earns? And if you think they should be paid more/less than they currently get.

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JaffavsCookie · 27/01/2024 21:03

Dispensers literally hand over labelled bags, can advise on OTC medication but nothing that Dr Google won’t tell you.
Chief NHS pharmacists can earn £114 000, ( regions not London) please no body tell me that is underpaid. Ex-colleague went back to pharmacy as they couldn’t stand the pay drop, is on way more than £65k ( if they are to be believed , do have a bit of a rep for truth stretching)

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chaosmaker · 27/01/2024 21:05

Yes, we're all supposed to have qualifications although nobody can teach you to be a good carer that is something that is innate. Recently our company has had to put out an email telling staff not to take calls on speaker phone when they're working in someone's house or listen to music with headphones in....

The Welsh government makes us register with social care wales. This just makes us spend £30/3 hours of our life registering for no good reason. I think it's a money making scam personally.

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prescribingmum · 27/01/2024 21:05

SoDoffYourHat · 27/01/2024 20:59

It's the pharmacist's responsibility, but don't tell me that if you were a dispenser and you made up a prescription incorrectly which killed someone, you'd just think 'not my responsibility' and shrug it off.

Legally, they are liable for nothing. They would be subject to any investigation the employer would do into the error should such a serious one occur however the buck stops with the pharmacist who checks it and it is their neck on the line.

So yes, from the legal perspective, they can just shrug it off. Naturally an employer will not retain someone who keeps making errors - as in almost any job

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MyopicBunny · 27/01/2024 21:06

My ex dh is an advanced pharmacy technician and he earns a good wage - he's progressed his job over the years but when he qualified he was definitely earning more than minimum wage. He's never worked in a shop pharmacy though.

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Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 21:07

JaffavsCookie · 27/01/2024 21:03

Dispensers literally hand over labelled bags, can advise on OTC medication but nothing that Dr Google won’t tell you.
Chief NHS pharmacists can earn £114 000, ( regions not London) please no body tell me that is underpaid. Ex-colleague went back to pharmacy as they couldn’t stand the pay drop, is on way more than £65k ( if they are to be believed , do have a bit of a rep for truth stretching)

No one is discussing the pay of pharmacists.

How do you think the medication gets in the bag? The pharmacy fairies? We just read the script, stick a label on and off it goes? That isn’t how it works.
Community pharmacy is in so much trouble, I worry what it will be like in a few years time.

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OvxvO · 27/01/2024 21:08

I’m not saying my job is the most physically or mentally demanding but I have been verbally abused more times than I can remember and physically assaulted in my work place (she got a caution) so it’s not a walk in the park

That's awful,but it's something everyone working in public facing work can experience.

Lots of minimal wage jobs require skills.

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converseandjeans · 27/01/2024 21:09

I would think there's lots more responsibility working in a pharmacy than selling clothes or something similar.

In a pharmacy I would have assumed that the person in charge would have a decent salary @ the people packing up & handing things out would be on retail salary.

If they sent the wrong items out & someone died they would be responsible. So it deserves a good salary.

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Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 21:09

MyopicBunny · 27/01/2024 21:06

My ex dh is an advanced pharmacy technician and he earns a good wage - he's progressed his job over the years but when he qualified he was definitely earning more than minimum wage. He's never worked in a shop pharmacy though.

Employers in community pharmacy aren’t willing to train people to be techs anymore.

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Allthecatseverywhereallatonce · 27/01/2024 21:10

Same as HCA's in hospital absolute travisty. HCA's are literally the backbone of the hospital. So many valuable jobs are underpaid and then there is confusion as to it is difficult to recruit and retain.

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Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 21:12

Allthecatseverywhereallatonce · 27/01/2024 21:10

Same as HCA's in hospital absolute travisty. HCA's are literally the backbone of the hospital. So many valuable jobs are underpaid and then there is confusion as to it is difficult to recruit and retain.

Maybe I’m crazy but I’ve been thinking about applying for HCA jobs to get away from pharmacy.

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YouAndMeAndThem · 27/01/2024 21:13

It's no wonder Pharmacy Dispensers/advisors are treated so abysmally with some of the attitudes on this thread.

We are trained to give advice regarding otc medications, to know when to refer to pharmacist, to give information about prescription medications as we are handing out, to know legal guidelines for different classes of medications and when we can/cannot dispense medications, to collate the medications, input the information from the script and write the directions properly, select the correct medication, raise any issues to the pharmacist. It's a trained job that yes of course anyone could do but it was 80 hours of work I did outwith my normal hours to complete my course to earn £11.50 per hours. I get spoken to like dirt and laughed at multiple times a day for asking questions which I am legally required to ask. If I sell medication to the wrong person and they die, that's on me. Yes the Pharmacist is ultimately responsible but that doesn't stop the moral responsibility I would have.

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WonderingWanda · 27/01/2024 21:14

Actually a child could come to serious harm if I make a mistake. I run lots of trips and it feels like an enormous responsibility to try to remember multiple complex medical needs like the child with brittle asthma who must use their portable nebuliser at a certain time, or that the child with a nut allergy doesn't eat something with nuts in, or just that one of them doesn't run out into a road. Or that I've counted them correctly and not left one behind. Even in school, trying to teach a class of 32 kids and remembering to check the one with a risk assessment for self harm came back from the toilet. Sounds easy but if you've ever felt ground down by incessant questions from your own child then imagine what it's like trying to deal with 32 of them at once...or even a coach full. Its pretty relentless and so easy to make a dangerous mistake.

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forcedfun · 27/01/2024 21:14

I know quite a few people who have started in this job and then gone on to train as pharmacists/nurses etc so I imagine it is quite good as a.CV builder.

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KissTheRains · 27/01/2024 21:14

That's awful,but it's something everyone working in public facing work can experience.

A man once threatened to rape one of my colleagues.... Because she refused to reduce a loaf of bread in Asda. She came in the back of the bakery in absolute floods of tears and shaking.. I matched out there and found the twat and chased the prick out of the store.
Happy the threaten an 18 year old 5ft size 8 petite girl.. not so keen to threaten a pissed off 40 year old six foot size 18. Disgusting prick.

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Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 21:17

YouAndMeAndThem · 27/01/2024 21:13

It's no wonder Pharmacy Dispensers/advisors are treated so abysmally with some of the attitudes on this thread.

We are trained to give advice regarding otc medications, to know when to refer to pharmacist, to give information about prescription medications as we are handing out, to know legal guidelines for different classes of medications and when we can/cannot dispense medications, to collate the medications, input the information from the script and write the directions properly, select the correct medication, raise any issues to the pharmacist. It's a trained job that yes of course anyone could do but it was 80 hours of work I did outwith my normal hours to complete my course to earn £11.50 per hours. I get spoken to like dirt and laughed at multiple times a day for asking questions which I am legally required to ask. If I sell medication to the wrong person and they die, that's on me. Yes the Pharmacist is ultimately responsible but that doesn't stop the moral responsibility I would have.

Thank You 🙏

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Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 21:18

forcedfun · 27/01/2024 21:14

I know quite a few people who have started in this job and then gone on to train as pharmacists/nurses etc so I imagine it is quite good as a.CV builder.

Yes, I have considered doing something like an access to HE course in nursing but have family commitments at the moment so it isn’t possible.

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nandinos · 27/01/2024 21:19

More than half the stuff on that flowchart could be automated. I'm surprised that private companies are still having people do all that.
A bit above minimum wage would be my guess.

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Londonrach1 · 27/01/2024 21:21

Min wage as shop work and their work be checked by a pharmacist...

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YouAndMeAndThem · 27/01/2024 21:21

Also that doesn't include ensuring that all our prescriptions are claimed for properly, counted and documented so we accurately get paid. We also ensure that all the medications are date checked weekly, CD cupboard is checked weekly, methadone is poured and ready for the patients, dosette boxes are ordered, dispensed and made up efficiently, prescriptions delivered from the surgery multiple times per day are entered into the system and dispensed in a timely manner, ordering medication efficiently from multiple suppliers, if we cant get it, liaising with surgeries to ensure an alternative script can be sent, ensuring all emails from surgeries are replied, the phone is answered, the tills are manned, the digital pharmacy has been checked and dispense, the deliveries are booked and sent out properly, remembering who gets deliveries and when, prescriptions that the pharmacist has checked and bagged are filed and texts sent out, CMS prescriptions are properly dated so that when they are due we can pull then and dispense them so they're ready when patients come to collect.

It's not just standing and taking in prescriptions and counting medication. I'm honestly quite offended that people think this way.

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Mumaway · 27/01/2024 21:22

I would guess standard retail wages, so minimum wage upwards

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saltnvini · 27/01/2024 21:23

YouAndMeAndThem · 27/01/2024 21:13

It's no wonder Pharmacy Dispensers/advisors are treated so abysmally with some of the attitudes on this thread.

We are trained to give advice regarding otc medications, to know when to refer to pharmacist, to give information about prescription medications as we are handing out, to know legal guidelines for different classes of medications and when we can/cannot dispense medications, to collate the medications, input the information from the script and write the directions properly, select the correct medication, raise any issues to the pharmacist. It's a trained job that yes of course anyone could do but it was 80 hours of work I did outwith my normal hours to complete my course to earn £11.50 per hours. I get spoken to like dirt and laughed at multiple times a day for asking questions which I am legally required to ask. If I sell medication to the wrong person and they die, that's on me. Yes the Pharmacist is ultimately responsible but that doesn't stop the moral responsibility I would have.

of course anyone could do seriously they couldn't. Not everyone can do it.

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Froggy99 · 27/01/2024 21:24

Londonrach1 · 27/01/2024 21:21

Min wage as shop work and their work be checked by a pharmacist...

But if your read “YouAmdMeAndThem”s posts above you will see it isn’t generic retail work.

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saltnvini · 27/01/2024 21:24

WonderingWanda · 27/01/2024 21:14

Actually a child could come to serious harm if I make a mistake. I run lots of trips and it feels like an enormous responsibility to try to remember multiple complex medical needs like the child with brittle asthma who must use their portable nebuliser at a certain time, or that the child with a nut allergy doesn't eat something with nuts in, or just that one of them doesn't run out into a road. Or that I've counted them correctly and not left one behind. Even in school, trying to teach a class of 32 kids and remembering to check the one with a risk assessment for self harm came back from the toilet. Sounds easy but if you've ever felt ground down by incessant questions from your own child then imagine what it's like trying to deal with 32 of them at once...or even a coach full. Its pretty relentless and so easy to make a dangerous mistake.

Fair enough. Maybe they should be paid the same as teachers then. I'll go with that.

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saltnvini · 27/01/2024 21:25

KissTheRains · 27/01/2024 21:14

That's awful,but it's something everyone working in public facing work can experience.

A man once threatened to rape one of my colleagues.... Because she refused to reduce a loaf of bread in Asda. She came in the back of the bakery in absolute floods of tears and shaking.. I matched out there and found the twat and chased the prick out of the store.
Happy the threaten an 18 year old 5ft size 8 petite girl.. not so keen to threaten a pissed off 40 year old six foot size 18. Disgusting prick.

What the hell.

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YouAndMeAndThem · 27/01/2024 21:28

saltnvini · 27/01/2024 21:23

of course anyone could do seriously they couldn't. Not everyone can do it.

Sorry what I meant was anyone could do the qualification, it's not elite as such, but I definitely agree not everyone could work in pharmacy! It's something else 🤣

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