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Australian pharmacy student perceptions of employment in the pharmaceutical industry
Background: In Australia, the predicted oversupply of pharmacists is contributing to concern regarding employment prospects. Traditionally, there have been low numbers of pharmacists employed in the Australian pharmaceutical industry and a lack of data on pharmacy students' perceptions of employment within this sector.
Aim: To determine pharmacy students' understanding and perceptions of the pharmaceutical industry as an employment option.
Method: Australian pharmacy students graduating in 2018 were invited to complete an online survey. Participants were recruited via Facebook sites for the National Australian Pharmacy Students' Association, the Early Career Pharmacists group of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA) and through intern training networks of the PSA, the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and Chemist Warehouse. Australian universities were also approached via e-mail to assist in distribution of the survey to their 2018 graduates.
Results: Complete responses were received from 124 students, representing 17 universities. Most respondents perceived the pharmaceutical industry as a good employment option (61%). However, they generally lacked understanding (77%), information and sufficient exposure to industry to fully comprehend the potential employment opportunities available. Furthermore, placements in the pharmaceutical industry are not universally available to pharmacy students, and less than 20% had undertaken such a placement. Respondents desired industry placements (81%), education (86%) and more exposure to this career option during their studies (86%).
Conclusion: Further research is needed on how Australian universities, the pharmaceutical industry and the pharmacy profession can collaborate to raise awareness of industry as a career option and equip graduates for these employment opportunities.
Publication titleJournal of Pharmacy Practice and Research
Department/SchoolSchool of Pharmacy and Pharmacology
PublisherWiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
Rights statement© 2021 The Society of Hospital Pharmacists of Australia