How Much Do Pharmacists Make in Each State?

JANUARY 27, 2016

Across the country, pharmacists tend to be paid pretty well.
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), pharmacists in the United States earned a median salary of $111,570 in 2010—the most recent year for which these statistics are available.
However, pharmacist salaries can widely vary from state to state. Depending on where you accept a pharmacist job, you can expect to make anywhere between $82,000 and $135,000 or more.
Demand for pharmacists and cost of living are the biggest factors influencing salaries by state. Pharmacists in California, Massachusetts, and New York can expect to earn a higher salary because of higher costs of living, such as rent, utilities, food, and transportation. Lower costs of living lead to lower salaries, which is why pharmacists in Hawaii and South Dakota can expect to earn less.
Here is a breakdown of the average annual salary for pharmacists in each state and US territory, according to a website that analyzes salary data from BLS and job-posting websites:
US State Average Annual Pharmacist Salary
Alabama $117,000
Alaska $97,000
American Samoa $124,000
Arizona $101,000
Arkansas $113,000
California $126,000
Colorado $101,000
Connecticut $124,000
Delaware $107,000
Florida $109,000
Georgia $125,000
Guam $97,000
Hawaii $82,000
Idaho $95,000
Illinois $121,000
Indiana $115,000
Iowa $107,000
Kansas $105,000
Kentucky $100,000
Louisiana $96,000
Maine $102,000
Maryland $115,000
Massachusetts $131,000
Michigan $112,000
Minnesota $104,000
Mississippi $134,000
Missouri $114,000
Montana $116,000
Nebraska $93,000
Nevada $106,000
New Hampshire $113,000
New Jersey $121,000
New Mexico $103,000
New York $135,000
North Carolina $114,000
North Dakota $108,000
Ohio $108,000
Oklahoma $105,000
Oregon $108,000
Pennsylvania $101,000
Puerto Rico $117,000
Rhode Island $115,000
South Carolina $104,000
South Dakota $89,000
Tennessee $109,000
Texas $109,000
Utah $101,000
Vermont $108,000
Virgin Islands $132,000
Virginia $115,000
Washington $109,000
Washington, D.C. $131,000
West Virginia $114,000
Wisconsin $101,000
Wyoming $106,000

Based on this list, pharmacists in New York can expect to earn the highest salary, at $135,000 a year. Meanwhile, pharmacists in Hawaii can expect to earn the lowest salary, at $82,000 a year. Pharmacy positions in other states typically pay $100,000 or more annually.
The specific city where the pharmacist job is located may also play a role in determining salary. For instance, a pharmacist in New York City could expect to earn significantly more than a pharmacist in a city in upstate New York, such as Syracuse or Buffalo.
Before you accept a pharmacy job in a new state, be sure to research the cost of living relative to the salary you are being offered. You should also consider factors such as transportation, availability of housing, commute time, and demand for pharmacists.
Happy job hunting!

Alex Barker, PharmD
Alex Barker, PharmD
Alex Barker is the founder of The Happy PharmD, which helps pharmacists create an inspiring career, break free from the mundane "pill-flipping" life. He is a Full-time Pharmacist, Media Company founder, franchise owner, Business Coach, Speaker, and Author. He's also the Founder of Pharmacy School HQ, which helps students get into pharmacy school and become residents.