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Become an ELS Locum Pharmacist

The ELS and the benefits of helping Rural and Remote Pharmacies in need

The objective of the Emergency Locum Service (ELS) program is to ensure that rural and remote communities retain access to pharmacy services at all times.

The Australian Government understands that Community Pharmacies in rural and remote areas operate with limited numbers of Pharmacists and without a helping hand when emergencies occur, some Pharmacies in rural and remote Australia would not be able to undertake dispensing duties to fully and effectively operate.

As such, Raven's Recruitment has been engaged by the Pharmacy Programs Administrator (PPA) who administer the program on behalf of the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care (DHAC), to provide the service to all eligible Pharmacies from the 1st of July, 2021 and provide that essential help.

We would love you to experience helping out Pharmacies in need and at the same time having an adventure, travelling to rural and remote locations at short notice and building up a wealth of knowledge in different cultures and communities.

In the "Your Pharmacy Career" podcast series, many of the Pharmacists interviewed talk about both the professional and personal benefits in working in rural and remote Australia. The ELS provides wonderful and diverse opportunities to experience this first hand.

Whether you are a professional locum looking for variety or a full-time Pharmacist wanting to help out when you have annual leave or a break in your career, any ELS assignment would be a welcomed and great addition to your CV.

Below you will find a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's), but if you have any other questions or would like to find out more about being an ELS Locum Pharmacist, phone us on 1800 991 541or email us on

Register as an Emergency Locum Pharmacist

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Before the introduction of the Emergency Locum Service (ELS), pharmacies in rural and remote areas who could not source a locum pharmacist in the event that the Pharmacist owner experienced an unforeseen emergency such as sickness or accident, could be forced to close. The ELS was created to provide support to these pharmacies by aiming to place a locum in any location in Australia within 24 hours.

    By registering as an Emergency Locum Pharmacist, you are helping fellow pharmacists cope when an emergency occurs, as well as helping the community by allowing the pharmacy to stay open and dispense vital medication.

  2. ​If you have registered your interest, our Recruitment Consultants will contact you with suitable opportunities as they arise.

  3. Emergency locum placements are for a minimum of one day and a maximum of seven consecutive days.

  4. ​It is impossible to predict when an emergency arises. The Program aims to have a pharmacist in a Pharmacy within 24 hours of the emergency request being made. As such, we will provide you with as much notice as possible.

  5. The standard locum Pharmacist pay rate in an emergency is $85/hour to $110/hour plus superannuation (Monday-Sunday) and $90/hour to $110/hour plus superannuation (Public Holidays), as required and amended from time to time.

    The Pharmacy will make arrangements to pay you directly, either via your ABN or as a casual employee.

  6. Raven's Recruitment in association with our preferred partner, will organise all transportation requirements between the locum's home and the Pharmacy location. That means, if you need a flight, a train and / or a hire car to get to that pharmacy, we and our travel partners will organise it all. The cost of travel is paid for by the ELS program up to $2,500 + GST.

    What you need to provide:

    • Photo identification - to facilitate flight booking using an E-ticket.

    • A credit card - just in case you need to get a hire car and have to leave a credit card imprint as a guarantee (this is standard practice).

    • Receipts - remember to keep receipts for any out of pocket travel expenses you incur, we can only reimburse you on presentation of a valid invoice or receipt (i.e., if you take an airport shuttle to the airport).

  7. ​The Pharmacy will provide you with suitable accommodation for the duration of your stay. Accommodation needs to be of a reasonable standard, e.g. a self-contained unit or hotel / motel / guesthouse.