Best Pharmacy Schools In Georgia | 2022 Programs, Requirements, Cost, Job Outlook

Studying a health-related course like Pharmacy in the U.S is very promising, but in Georgia, it is much more profitable. The reason is that Georgia has some of the oldest and best schools in the U.S where one can acquire world-class education in Pharmacy.

These top Pharmacy colleges in Georgia (GA) train students to drift from manufacturing medications to more of a clinical role.

Statistics show that pharmacy is one of the most important careers in the delivery of health care services.

This is because pharmacists are the professionals in the health care sector who have the most detailed knowledge of drugs and how they work.

Pharmacists are usually the first person that people meet to seek medical advice and/or medication whenever they’re sick especially in the rural areas.

If you wish to study in the U.S to become a pharmacist, Georgia is the right bet for you. This article will list and explain carefully the best schools for Pharmacy in Georgia (GA).

In addition to this, you will learn about the admission requirements of the Pharmacy colleges in Georgia, their programs, and their costs.

Why study Pharmacy?

There are so many reasons as to why students choose to study Pharmacy. We will discuss some of the reasons below.

Students choose to study Pharmacy so as to build relationships with patients. Pharmacists in general, offer patient-centered care.

These professionals consider the relationship between medical conditions and lifestyle to help choose the best medications.

They also work with colleagues to conduct research and collaborate with doctors to ensure that patients are receiving the correct medications.

Being part of major innovations in the health field is a major reason why students venture into this field of study.

Presently, scientists know that genetic variation in genes can affect a body’s response to a drug. Someday, they hope to sequence the entire human gene in each individual.

With this information, pharmacists and healthcare providers can choose the treatments suited best to an individual’s needs.

The demand for healthcare delivery is always high. There are always new drugs and treatments on the market and prescriptions to be administered. This thereby makes the demand for pharmacists and other health care providers to be high. Upon graduation, you will secure a job immediately.

Read: Are Pharmacists Doctors? What Can I Do To Become A “Dr.”

Who is a Pharmacist?

A pharmacist is a healthcare professional that specializes in the use of medicines, as they deal with the composition, effects, mechanism of action, and proper and effective use of drugs.

Pharmacists play a major role in helping people get the best results from their medications. They prepare and dispense prescriptions and ensure medicines and doses are correct. Pharmacologists also limit harmful drug interactions and advise patients on the safe use of their medications.

Additionally, pharmacists specialize in the composition of medicines such as their chemical, biological, physical properties, manufacture, and use.

Other health care specialists depend on pharmacists to choose and administer medicines that give the best results and quality of life to patients. They may also prepare personalized medications, engage in ward rounds in a hospital, and limit the spread of infections.

Pharmacists can conduct clinical trials or focus on a particular patient population or disease state including diabetes, heart disease, asthma, HIV, and pain management. 

Read: 9 Best Pharmacy Schools in Texas: Schools, Salary, Cost, Requirements

What are the educational requirements to become a pharmacist in Georgia?

Students who wish to pursue a degree in any of the Pharmacy schools in Georgia (GA) must first, take the Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT).

The PCAT is a standardized test that helps identify qualified applicants to pharmacy colleges and schools in the U.S.

It measures general academic abilities and scientific knowledge which the commencement of professional Pharmacy education requires.

Successful applicants now move on to complete the Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.) degree at any of the Pharmacy schools in Georgia (GA).

The Pharmacy school in GA must be accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education. Meanwhile, several students start Pharm.D. programs after only two or three years of undergraduate study.

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During the undergraduate study, students take prerequisite courses including general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, human anatomy and physiology, biology, calculus, and statistics.

They focus on earning very high grades in these courses. Meanwhile, students in Pharm.D. programs take courses including:

  • Pharmaceutical chemistry: the use of chemistry to design and evaluate drugs
  • Pharmacognosy: the study of drugs derived from plants and animals
  • Pharmacology: the study of the effect of drugs on the human body

Pharm.D. programs focus on dispensing medication, counseling patients, and business principles. Most times, pharmacists manage a staff of technicians and may someday open their own pharmacies.

So, having a knowledge of accounting, merchandising, and legal issues will help the student.

Pharmacy students complete many hours of clinical training in diverse healthcare settings including community, hospital, and compounding pharmacies.

Toward the student’s final year, they are designated clinical rotations in hospitals, physicians’ offices, and pharmaceutical companies.

Upon successful completion of the PharmD program, graduates must also complete an internship and pass a board-approved examination before they can become licensed pharmacists in Georgia.

How much does it cost to study Pharmacy in Georgia?

The cost of acquiring a Pharmacy degree in Georgia varies from each school. Tuition costs are usually an important factor in making your admission decision to any college or school of your choice in GA for your Pharmacy program.

You can expect to pay tuition fees ranging from $85,404 to $179,408 to study Pharmacy in Georgia. In addition, your in-state or out-of-state status will greatly influence your cost of education.

How long will it take me to study in a Pharmacy College in Georgia?

The PharmD program requires at least two (2) years of pre-professional (undergraduate) coursework followed by four (4) academic years of professional study.

Pharmacy colleges in Georgia may admit students directly from high school for both the pre-pharmacy and pharmacy curriculum or upon completion of the college course prerequisites.

Most students, on the other hand, enter the pharmacy program with three (3) years of college experience.

Applicants who are college graduates enrolling in a pharmacy program must complete the full four (4) academic years (or 3-calendar) years of professional study to earn the Pharm.D. degree.

Generally, it will take you between four (4) to eight (8) years to complete the PharmD study.

Read also: Easiest Pharmacy Schools to Get Into In 2022 | Expert Guide

How can I acquire licensure for Pharmacy in Georgia?

All pharmacists in Georgia must obtain a license to practice. To become a licensed pharmacist in Georgia, you are required to complete an accredited Pharm.D. program in any of the Pharmacy schools in GA.

Afterward, you apply, take, and pass three licensing examinations. These licensing examinations for Pharmacists in Georgia include:

  • Georgia Practical
  • North American Pharmacist Licensing Exam (NAPLEX)
  • Multi-State Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam (MPJE)

Before applying to these licensing exams, you must, first of all, apply to the Georgia State Board to verify your eligibility. You can click here to apply and verify your eligibility.

Once you confirm that you have been verified, you can then apply to the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) for the NAPLEX and MPJE.

The Georgia Practical Examination is administered by the state and is specific to the state of Georgia.

Meanwhile, you can click on the link below to apply to NABP for the NAPLEX and MPJE.

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How much will I make as Pharmacist in Georgia?

According to Payscale, an entry-level Pharmacist earn an average of $101,975 annually.

Pharmacists that have between 1 to 4 years of experience earn an average of $109,799 annually. Mid-career Pharmacists with 5 to 9 years of experience make an average of $108,000 annually.

Pharmacists that have experience ranging from 10 to19 years make an average of $108,991 annually.

In their late career (20 years and higher), Pharmacists earn an average of $116,921 annually.

Read: 20 Best Pharmacy Residency Programs In The World | 2021 Rankings

What is the job outlook of Pharmacists in Georgia?

The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the employment of pharmacists is projected to be at 8.92%, which is slightly lower than the national average of 9%.

In the year 2026, 10,420 pharmacists will be working in the state of Georgia. In addition to the BLS reports, there will be 510 job openings which include new and replacement positions every year.

The demand for pharmacists will increase in a variety of healthcare settings such as including hospitals and clinics.

These healthcare settings will need more pharmacists to supervise the medications that patients receive and to provide patient care.

Older people will normally use more prescription medicines than younger people. Higher rates of chronic diseases including diabetes among all age groups will also lead to demand for prescription medications.

Scientific advances in the field of Pharmacy will lead to the production of new drugs.

The employment of pharmacists in pharmacies and drug stores is projected to decline. However, retail pharmacies will be affected by increasing sales through mail orders and online pha

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rmacies. Pharmacy technicians will be taking a greater role in pharmacy operations. 

Finally, the pharmacy schools in Georgia have created more graduates leading to more competition for jobs.

Graduates who choose to complete a residency program gain additional experience that may improve their job prospects. 

What are the Best Pharmacy Schools in Georgia?

We have compiled a list of the top Pharmacy schools in Georgia (GA) that offer several degree programs for you.

The best Pharmacy schools in Georgia were arranged according to our ranking factors. These ranking factors include:

Acceptance Rate: The acceptance rate for each school determines how admissions are offered in a school.

Lower percentages show that the institution has a strict admission policy and so, therefore, admissions are highly competitive.

Number of Programs: This shows the exact number of degree programs each Pharmacy school in GA offers. For example, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and doctoral degree.

Accreditation: This explains the recognized academic body that ensures and certifies that each school has the facilities and environment to offer any program in Pharmacy.

Graduation Rate: The rate at which students in each Pharmacy college in Georgia complete their programs successfully.

Tuition Fees: The amount it costs to acquire a degree in each Pharmacy school in Georgia.

Student-Faculty Ratio.

Using this ranking methodology, below are the best schools for Pharmacy in Georgia:

  • University of Georgia
  • Mercer University
  • Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
  •  South University School of Pharmacy

1. University of Georgia

The University of Georgia is a public research university that was established in 1785. This university is one of the oldest public institutions of higher learning in the United States.

Its main campus is in Athens but it maintains satellite campuses in Albany, Savannah, and Augusta. The institution’s Center for Drug Discovery is in charge of interdisciplinary research.

The Center for Drug Discovery aims to discover and develop new pharmaceuticals to fight diseases caused by infectious viruses and microbial agents.

The University of Georgia College of Pharmacy offers several degree programs such as certificate, bachelor’s, master’s, Ph.D., residency, and a professional degree.

This makes the university one of the best schools for Pharmacy in Georgia.

UGA’s ten semesters of PharmD take four years to complete. To gain admission into the undergraduate program, applicants must take and pass the Pharmacy College Admission Test.

Afterward, they will submit their applications by September 4 for early decision consideration and by February 1 for regular consideration.

In the first two years of the program, students take classes at the Athens campus while some move on to Albany, Augusta, or Savannah to complete their coursework in the third year.

During the fourth year, students acquire clinical experiences and this takes place at different hospitals, healthcare systems, long-term care facilities, community pharmacies, specialty pharmacies, and ambulatory care clinics throughout Georgia.

Furthermore, UGA has an acceptance rate of 49%, a graduation rate of 84%, and a student-faculty ratio of 18:1.

The tuition fee for UGA’s College of Pharmacy is $8,318 per semester (Georgia residents) and $18,672 (out-of-state).

The University of Georgia College of Pharmacy holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education.

2. Mercer University

Mercer University is a private research university that was established in 1833 as Mercer Institute. Four years after, the institution attained university status, making it the oldest private university in Georgia.

Mercer University’s College of Pharmacy offers four combined degree programs. They include  Pharm.D./Ph.D. the degree program, Pharm.D./M.B.A degree program, Pharm.D./M.P.H. degree program, and the Pharm.D./M.S. in Health Informatics degree program

Meanwhile, the curriculum of the College of Pharmacy includes three years of classroom coursework and one year of experiential learning.

During the first year, students engage in hands-on training and pursue a capstone project. Students undertake most clinical training in metropolitan Atlanta, Columbus, Macon, and Savannah areas.

However, they also have the option of pursuing an Advanced Clinical Tract in research or going abroad to participate in Global Medical Missions, the Indian Health Service (IHS), or an International Pharmacy elective.

The U.S. News and World Report” ranks Mercer University’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences #6 among the best in the U.S. You can see why it is one of the best Pharmacy colleges in Georgia.

Mercer University has an acceptance rate of 72%, a graduation rate of 66%, and a student-faculty ratio of 17:1.

The tuition fee for the College of Pharmacy is $19,077.50 per semester. In addition to the tuition fees, students will have to pay facilities and technology fee of $150 each semester.

The university’s College of Pharmacy holds accreditation from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE).

3. Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) is a private medical school that was founded in 1899. PCOM is one of the oldest medical schools in the United States.

Its main campus is in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The institution has additional campuses in Suwanee, Georgia (PCOM Georgia), and Moultrie, Georgia (PCOM South Georgia).

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PCOM offers only graduate-level training in Pharmacy which is the Doctor of Pharmacy PharmD. The program offers students a comprehensive curriculum that is created to train them to practice in any healthcare setting.

In the first three years, students receive classroom coursework and introductory experiential learning.

During the final year which is the fourth year, students participate in eight, five-week clinical rotations. This gives them exposure to multiple pharmacy specialty areas and practices.

The program takes a duration of four years to complete. The tuition fee for the Doctor of Pharmacy PharmD program is $40,140 per academic year.

PCOM Georgia’s Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education.

4. South University School of Pharmacy

South University is a private university in Georgia, the U.S.A that was founded in 1899. Its main campus is in Savannah.

The university’s School of Pharmacy has two locations including Savannah, GA, and Columbia, SC.

South University’s School of Pharmacy offers an accelerated Doctor of Pharmacy program. The program provides students with four years of learning within three academic years.

Through the PharmD program, students develop the skills they need to provide excellent care to those they serve.

The duties of pharmacists are actually changing and evolving to meet the demands of the profession and society.

So, the Pharmacy degree curriculum here is designed to produce graduates who can adapt to the profession’s changes while also maintaining high standards of pharmacy practice.

Additionally, the university’s graduates do very well in community practice, hospital practice, residency training, the pharmaceutical industry, and business.

The university has an acceptance rate of 100%, a graduation rate of 3%, and a student-faculty ratio of 24:1. The tuition fee for the PharmD program at South University is $48,180 per year.

South University’s Doctor of Pharmacy is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE)

Conclusion

It is surprising how people still see pharmacists as people that just stay behind the counter and administer drugs to patients. However, a pharmacist’s role has gone beyond that.

This is because the pharmacist delivers pharmaceutical care, examines the suitability of the medication for a patient, and takes into account the patient’s medical history.

The top schools for Pharmacy in Georgia (GA) are adapting to the latest methods of health delivery.

Potential pharmacists in Georgia are trained to form health care teams with other health professionals whereby a patient’s health is viewed holistically and medical problems are addressed from the perspective of the patient’s life history and environment.

Additionally, the best Pharmacy colleges in Georgia train professionals who now move away from a role in manufacturing the actual medications to more of a clinical role.

This will lead to pharmacists’ understanding of disease processes and how they can be addressed with lifestyle changes and drug therapy. 

FAQs on the Best Pharmacy Colleges in Georgia (GA)

Are Pharmacists doctors?

Although pharmacists are required to hold a doctoral degree in pharmacy, they are not medical doctors.
In fact, several differences exist between the two professions including what they are legally allowed to do in the field of healthcare.

Is pharmacy worth it?

Pharmacy is a good career and it is worth it. Forbes report that the average salary for a pharmacist is $116,700 per year.

What skills do I need to become a pharmacist?

The skills that you need to become a pharmacist include:
1. Accuracy
2. Communication Skills
3. ProofReading
4. Interpersonal Skills
5. Management Skills
6. Multitasking
7. Patient Counseling
8. Professional Ethics
9. Computer Skills

Is being a pharmacist a stressful job?

Yes, it is. As a pharmacist, you get the four “D’s”: death, depression, drug abuse, and divorce.
It is always one of the worst-rated jobs in terms of health outcomes for living.

What are the difficult challenges students face in pharmacy schools in Georgia?

The difficult challenges that students face while in a Pharmacy school in Georgia include:
1. The heavy course load
2. Time management
3. Tuition, housing, and other pharmacy school costs
4. A “bad” rotation (introductory/advanced pharmacy practice experience [IPPE/APPE])
5. Staying physically and mentally healthy

How long does it take to receive a Pharmacist license after sitting for the examination?

The time spent on processing the applications vary due to the volume of applications received. Currently, application processing takes approximately 35 working days. In other words, it will take 35 working days after taking the exam to receive your pharmacist license.

How much does it cost to obtain a license?

Georgia issues several different types of licenses. Each type of them has a non-refundable application fee. Click here to download the fee schedule.

References

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