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Any Pharmacists on here? Quest for FIRE
Old 08-09-2005, 09:00 AM   #1
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Any Pharmacists on here? Quest for FIRE

Just wondering if there are any other pharmacists on here. If so where do you work and how are you doing in your FIRE plan? I hope I am not alone as I feel I am hopeless in my attempt. Thanks.

Dave
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 09:45 AM   #2
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Dave, I have no idea as to whether there are any pharmacists besides you on the board, but would be curious as to the issues you are facing in your FIRE plans. Tell us about yourself.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 09:52 AM   #3
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

I was just wondering if anyone on here is in the same boat as me. So many posters speak of pensions and retiree healthcare and for pharmacists who work for chains or small infusion companies like me this is just not reality. Most of these companies have horrible benefits, including some of the worst 401k plans I have ever seen. So I just wanted to know if there are others in the same field as me and how they are making there plan work. I dont even think I have a plan right now. I am paying off debt from my younger days and I just got married so we are looking for a house. So we only have cash savings right now since my small company does not have a 401k. I make good money but it never seems to get me anywhere with all our student loans and the debt I am paying off now. It is hard cause we just got married and we try to save as much as we can but it seems like nothing since most of our income goes to debt. Sorry for rambling.

Dave
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 10:04 AM   #4
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Dave, my spouse and I have no pension. We will have no retiree health benefits. We once had huge student loans. I was late to start with a 401(k)and had bad advice during the tech boom so it has only about 15% of our net worth in it. Nevertheless, my DH retired early and I work only part time, and probably will retire soon.

Does your wife work and have a 401(k)? If so, work on maximizing contributions to that plan. If not, contribute to an IRA.

Are you eligible for a Roth IRA? (You probably are unless you and your wife have in excess of 160,000 of income).

Lots of people here talk about living below their means and maximizing savings, both in and out of retirement plans, as the road to FIRE. Keep pluggin away at the debt, LBYM, and don't forget the power of compounding.


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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 10:13 AM   #5
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougie790
Just wondering if there are any other pharmacists on here.* If so where do you work and how are you doing in your FIRE plan?* I hope I am not alone as I feel I am hopeless in my attempt.* Thanks.

Dave
Dave it sounds as if your challenges are more life related than career specific.* Plenty of folks have those same issues (sorry benefits, pesky debt, etc).* I would guess the only difference in being a pharmacist is that your higher than median earnings gives you a leg up in resolving the problems.
When you define your goals and obstacles, you'll find plenty of help here. Good luck
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 10:20 AM   #6
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Thanks for the encouragement. I just wanted to hear from people doing what I am doing. It just makes me feel better I guess.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 12:53 PM   #7
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Dave,

My dad's a pharmacist, but I admit he's likely in a better situation than you since he owns 2 drug stores and works in one of them at the moment.* I've never asked him what he offers to his other pharmacists in terms of benefits.* *I know they have the basics at least while they're working such as health etc., but i'm not sure how great it is.* *Of course he doesnt do actual pensions (and doesnt have one for himself either, naturally).

My only thought is your leg up is your actual income.* My dad told me he pays his tenured pharmacist 100K, and this is only in a rural town in Arkansas, so i can only imagine what a full-time pharmacist makes in a larger city with a higher cost of living.* With that kind of income, you should be able to adjust your lifestyle where you can maximize your IRA contributions.* * You want to get out of that debt first though.* *Some good ideas for getting out of debt are covered at www.davidramsey.com.* * *I'm not a fan of his per se cause he's too simplistic for me and i actually use some debt intentionally, but he has a decent straightforward plan for getting out of debt.

Granted my wife works and suppliments our income,but if i was making 100K (or more) i'd be sitting pretty for building my retirement; not lamenting.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:06 PM   #8
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougie790
I was just wondering if anyone on here is in the same boat as me.
Chances are you are making double the average income, so you may be in the same kind of boat as everyone else, except yours is bigger.

Retail pharmacy is stressful. *Just keep looking for higher paying chains, less script volume, and a good team of other pharmacists and techs. *Flex hours would be good too like one day on one day off.

Other than that, if you get burned out, you could always work in a hospital.

It is very difficult to start your own independent pharmacy, unless you go big time with a couple of other pharmacists. *Otherwise the chains eat you alive, not to mention all the Hippa requirements these days.

Have you ever considered creating a pharmaceutical consulting business? *I know pharmacists are expected to give free advice about medications, but I wonder if there is a way to create a business model that would allow you to bill the insurance companies, or at least charge directly for private consultations regarding things like drug interactions and drug alternatives.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:09 PM   #9
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by azanon
My dad told me he pays his tenured pharmacist 100K, and this is only in a rural town in Arkansas, so i can only imagine what a full-time pharmacist makes in a larger city with a higher cost of living.
Not much more. Pharmacists have a great starting pay coming out of college (around $85K), but there is not much increase after that.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:28 PM   #10
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
It is very difficult to start your own independent pharmacy, unless you go big time with a couple of other pharmacists.* Otherwise the chains eat you alive, not to mention all the Hippa requirements these days.
According to my dad, this is definitely true.* *He's definitely a dying breed.* *

His potential threat where he is was/always has always been Walmart.* *He managed to keep them at bay, because his pharmacy and the Walmart are both located in the same shopping center (the main shopping center of the town).* *The actual owner of the shopping center is a third party.* Somehow he got the owner of the shopping center (who he leases from) to agree in contract that he was the only one that could put a pharmacy in that shopping center.* This effectively prevented Walmart from putting one in themselves and outcompetting him ;-).

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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:29 PM   #11
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by retire@40
Not much more.* Pharmacists have a great starting pay coming out of college (around $85K), but there is not much increase after that.
Well considering that the job consists of rolling little colored balls out of one large container into another smaller container, and typing (very slowly) what someone else has told you to type, this seems like pretty good pay. Just save the $50,000 excess over (say) a starting teachers salary and you should be FIRED and out of there in no time.

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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:33 PM   #12
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Well considering that the job consists of rolling little colored balls out of one large container into another smaller container, and typing (very slowly) what someone else has told you to type, this seems like pretty good pay. Just save the $50,000 excess over (say) a starting teachers salary and you should be FIRED and out of there in no time.
You should have just went ahead and said, I have no clue what a pharmacist does/is responsible for. It would have been shorter.

btw, my dad types about 90 wpm * shrug * I know cause he's just as fast as me, and that's my speed (timed w/errors factored in).
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:34 PM   #13
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by azanon
According to my dad, this is definitely true. He's definitely a dying breed.

His potential threat where he is was/always has always been Walmart. He managed to keep them at bay, because his pharmacy and the Walmart are both located in the same shopping center (the main shopping center of the town). The actual owner of the shopping center is a third party. Somehow he got the owner of the shopping center (who he leases from) to agree in contract that he was the only one that could put a pharmacy in that shopping center. This effectively prevented Walmart from putting one in themselves and outcompetting him ;-).

Boy your dad has a ready made buyer for his pharmacy.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:36 PM   #14
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Boy your dad has a ready made buyer for his pharmacy.
I'm sure he's interested in perspective buyers given his age.* Granted he paid about 600K for the part he didnt own about 10 years ago (2/3rds of it), so i hope the buyer has some cash on hand ;-).

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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:38 PM   #15
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by azanon
I'm sure he's interested in perspective buyers given his age.* Granted he paid about 600K for the part he didnt own about 10 years ago (2/3rds of it), so i hope the buyer has some cash on hand ;-).

Azanon
Chances are Wal*Mart may be interested. Rumor has it they have some cash* :
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:40 PM   #16
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

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Chances are Wal*Mart may be interested. Rumor has it they have some cash
That's his plan.* *But i think they're trying to decide atm if going after his "contract arrangement" is the cheaper route, winning the suit, and just outright outcompetting him.* *But even that would be no easy feat as folks in those small towns tend to be quite loyal.

Also, if someone's using insurance, why go to walmart?* Give the small business owner the money cause you're going to pay the same co-pay anyway. I live in little rock and he's encouraged me to seek out the local pharmacy owner here just to help them out. So far, i've just been lazy and have gone to walgreens. He's right though, I should help the small guy out i think.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:52 PM   #17
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaHa
Well considering that the job consists of rolling little colored balls out of one large container into another smaller container, and typing (very slowly) what someone else has told you to type, this seems like pretty good pay. Just save the $50,000 excess over (say) a starting teachers salary and you should be FIRED and out of there in no time.
Ha
Geez, Mikey, I had to check the address a couple times to make sure that it was really you who posted this.

I'll just stop there.
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:53 PM   #18
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by azanon
That's his plan.* *But i think they're trying to decide atm if going after his "contract arrangement" is the cheaper route, winning the suit, and just outright outcompetting him.* *But even that would be no easy feat as folks in those small towns tend to be quite loyal.

Also, if someone's using insurance, why go to walmart?* Give the small business owner the money cause you're going to pay the same co-pay anyway.* I live in little rock and he's encouraged me to seek out the local pharmacy owner here just to help them out.* *So far, i've just been lazy and have gone to walgreens.* *He's right though, I should help the small guy out i think.
Your Dad must be driving the Bentonville dudes absolutely crazy. *
Tell me something- - - can he feel those pins they are sticking in the pharmacist doll up there??
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:56 PM   #19
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Quote:
Originally Posted by azanon
Somehow he got the owner of the shopping center (who he leases from) to agree in contract that he was the only one that could put a pharmacy in that shopping center. This effectively prevented Walmart from putting one in themselves and outcompetting him ;-).
Don't you just love the free enterprise system?

- Allows the pharmacy owner to protect his rights and prevent being forced out of business by Walmart through exclusive rights in the shopping center. Good for the little guy/small businessman and more power to him to protect his livelihood.

- Keeps the public from getting lower drug prices (OK, not quite as high drug prices) by preventing the Walmart high-volume, mega-purchasing power pharmacy from doing business in the center. Good for...who?

Everyone wins!!!!

And BTW, not all of us have drug coverage so we shop for the lowest high price we can find... FYI, I don't have any problem with what the pharmacy owner is doing, I would do the same in his situation.

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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?
Old 08-09-2005, 01:57 PM   #20
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Re: Any Pharmacists on here?

Thanks for the replies. *I would love to save all my income but the student loan people take a good chunk each month as does rent. *Salaries are not always that great. *I have not worked in retail since I got out of school in 2000, and I would never do that again, that is the worst. *Tons of money but no time to enjoy it. *People treat you like you work at Mcdonalds. *Now I am the manager of a small infusion company and I make 90 grand a year with no 401k and crappy benefits, but its low stress at least. *Once I have the credit card debt paid off I will have some extra cash but not much. *I make a good salary but my expenses are too high and theres nothing I can do about any of them. *I live below my means with spending but its the monthly bills that kill me. *I would also love to buy a house but have no idea how anyone making less than me can afford one cause I cant see myself ever affording one. *As for starting a consulting business, I have always wanted to but have no idea how to start. *Also I have only been out of school for 5 years so who is gonna listen to me. *Oh well I will stop whining here and get back to work. *Thanks

Dave
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