How Australians rank pharmacists for ethics

Survey compares professions and professionals

Australians have voted pharmacists as the second most ethical people they come into contact with.

How Australians rank pharmacists for ethics

They rank marginally behind GPs in the 2018 Governance Institute survey, which asked 1000 Australians to rank professionals and organisations on a five-point scale, from very unethical to very ethical.

Overall, health tops the ethical sector rankings, coming in ahead of education.

But pharmacists have come in fourth in the ethical ranking of medical professionals, behind GPs, nurses and vets.

This is the same as in 2017, but a significant drop from the inaugural survey in 2016, which ranked them second.

Here are some of the results:

Most ethical sector

  1. Health
  2. Education
  3. Charities and the not-for-profit sector
  4. Professional membership sector
  5. Public sector
  6. Small to medium enterprise
  7. Trade or worker associations

Most ethical professionals encountered

  1. GPs
  2. Pharmacists
  3. Local hospital
  4. Accountant
  5. Lawyer
  6. Financial planner
  7. Bank

Most ethical health professions

  1. Nurses
  2. GPs
  3. Vets
  4. Pharmacists
  5. Dentists
  6. Ancillary service providers
  7. Funeral directors

Other key takeout-outs

  • The AMA was again considered the most ethical membership association. The Pharmacy Guild and PSA were not on the list of groups presented to participants.
  • Medical charities were voted the most ethical among charity groups.
  • Pharmaceutical companies continue to be incongruous with the rest of the health sector, leaning towards being considered unethical.
  • Australians consider immigration, euthanasia and Indigenous affairs the most difficult issues to navigate from an ethical point of view. Terrorism has dropped to eighth place from third in 2017.
  • Businesses such as Uber and Airbnb have suffered a drop in their ethics rating but remain on top of the most ethical future developments.
  • Gene manipulation for medical treatments and embryo experimentation are considered somewhat unethical.