At one time or another, you’ve probably dealt with a pharmacist -- at least when getting a prescription filled. But pharmacologists are an entirely different profession. In fact, you won’t likely ever work with one. Pharmacologists typically work behind the scenes, researching and developing medications and monitoring the safety of medical treatments. In a word, they’re scientists.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, medical scientists averaged $90,230 a year in 2013. But with Pharmikos, a pharmacology and toxicology consulting site, noting that the FDA employs a “small army” of pharmacologists, you need only look at the Federal government to determine earnings for this profession. In this setting, pharmacologists are likely to bring home around $117,730 a year. Those working for pharmaceutical manufacturers earned slightly less, at an average of $107,330 annually. The jobseeker’s site Indeed provides a similar figure, setting the average at $114,000 as of 2014.
Earnings by Location
In New York, pharmacologists earn 21 percent more than the average pharmacologist, bringing home $138,000 a year. Those working in California averaged $122,000 a year, while pharmacologists working in Illinois earned $130,000 annually. In Wisconsin, salaries averaged $102,000. Salaries in South Dakota, however, weren't as high, coming in at $86,000 a year.
Teaching medical students is often another career path for pharmacologists, and salaries for these types of positions are on par with -- if not higher than -- those doing research. According to the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, assistant professors averaged $100,150 as of 2014. Salaries for associate professors came in at $114,209 and those for professors averaged at $155,166.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for medical scientists should grow by 13 percent through 2022. Compared to the national average for all U.S. occupations of 11 percent, it’s hard not to notice that this career is expanding, largely due to the need for research on illnesses affecting the world.
- Pharmikos: What is a Pharmacologist?
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook – Medical Scientists
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2013 – Medical Scientists
- Indeed: Pharmacologist Salary
- American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy: Salary Data
- Indeed: Pharmacologist Salary in New York
- Indeed: Pharmacologist Salary in California
- Indeed: Pharmacologist Salary in Illinois
- Indeed: Pharmacologist Salary in Wisconsin
- Indeed: Pharmacologist Salary in South Dakota
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