Undergraduate Pharmacy Students’ Perceptions of Community and Hospital Pharmacy


  • Chia Hwei Goh
  • Amal Mohd Nazri
  • Sarah Rajah
  • Angela Stathopoulos
  • Meredith Wiseman
  • Angelina Lim




Community pharmacy, pharmacy student, pharmacy industry, hospital pharmacy, Pharmacy education, student-led research


Background: The pharmacy workforce is changing especially since COVID-19; there are more opportunities in the community sector to entice our graduates to choose a career path in community pharmacy.

Aim: To investigate pharmacy students’ current perceptions towards working in the hospital and community sectors

Method: A survey distributed to undergraduate pharmacy students across 14 universities.

Results: A total of 193 participants completed the survey. Results showed that the majority of participants aimed to pursue a career in hospital pharmacy (50.3%) versus community pharmacy (29.5%). The focal benefits of working in community pharmacy (n=525) were ‘opportunities to improve health literacy and patient education’ (19.2%) engagement in ‘customer services and interactions’ (19.0%), followed by ‘job stability’ (17.9%), whereas the main reservations (n=514) were ‘opportunities for career progression’ 23.3%) ‘remuneration’ (20.0%), and ‘opportunities for specialisation’ (16.5%).

Conclusion: Pharmacy students still indicate a preference towards a career in hospital pharmacy over community pharmacy despite new opportunities, identifying poor remuneration and limited opportunities for career progression as the main reservations for working in community pharmacy. More work focusing on raising the profile and value of community pharmacists as well as evolving roles of community pharmacists may be necessary to attract pharmacy students into the sector.


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