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Explore the Ins and Outs of a career in healthcare and medicine.
Healthcare is one of the few industries where job and career opportunities are on the rise.
While at times stressful, healthcare is one of the most rewarding of all career fields to work in.
Health Careers by Field
Allied Health Professions
Allied health professionals work directly with patients but may also function in a variety of administrive roles. Most specialists are found working in public and private healthcare facilities including hospitals, laboratories and clinics. However, many manager their own practices or work as part of a team of other specialized medical professionals to determine how to best treat and care for their patients.
Most allied health professionals/specialists are either technologists, technicians, or therapists-which technicians being the most popular of the allied health career positions. It typically requires a year or two of formal training to become a technician. Technicians work under the supervision of technologists, therapists as well as doctors themselves. Technicians can be found in just about every allied health field including, but not limited to, respiratory therapy, recreation therapy, occupational therapy, radiology, medical laboratory, and physical therapy.
Technologists resposibilties usually revolve around the development of medical procedures, patient evaluation and medical diagnostics. Specially technologists may design detailed patient treatment plans, evaluate patients' reaction to treatment/medications, implement complex medical procedures aimed at patient evaluation and care, and make informed recommendations to their superiors (i.e. medical doctors, osteopathic doctors, etc.)
- Allied Dental Educator
- Anesthesiologist Assistants
- Anesthesia Technologist/Technician
- Biomedical Equipment Technician
- Biomedical Engineer
- Blood Bank Technology Specialist
- Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Specialist
- Cardiovascular Technologist/Technician
- Clinical Laboratory Technologist
- Community Health Worker
- Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
- Electroneurodiagnostic Technologist
- Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
- General Aide
- Genetic Counselor
- Health Information Manager
- Healthcare Interpreter
- Homecare Assistant/Aide
- Medical Assistant
- Medical Coder
- Medical Transcriptionist
- Nuclear Medicine Technologist
- Nurses Aide/Nursing Assistant
- Ophthalmic Laboratory Technician
- Optician (Dispensing)
- Orientation & Mobility Specialist
- Orthotist and Prosthetist
- Pathologists' Assistant
- Psychiatric Aide
- Radiologic Technologist
- Respiratory Therapist
- Surgical Technologist
Alternative & Complementary Medicine
They typically recommend nutritional changes, exercise, and stress management techniques to their patients. They believe, if treated properly, the body can heal itself. Many incorporate ancient medical treatments and meditation into treatment plans.
Arts & Humanities in Health
Workers with a background in humanities have the ability to connect with patients and understand how culture affects human health. Yet many people are unaware that many humanities related careers are available in the healthcare industry.
Environmental health specialists identify environmental hazards and develop strategies to reduce and eliminate them from the environment. These specialists include public health specialists, environmental health officials, and environmental health practitioners.
Environmental health specialists work closely with elected officials, engineers, doctors, meteorologists, biologists, geologists, chemists, and other professionals in an effort to identify and eliminate environmental pollutants.
Forensic scientists utilize psychology, math, biology, physics, chemistry, and toxicology while investigating crimes. They also assist people investigating steroid scandals in professional sports, drug use at worksites, and environmental catastrophes, such as toxic chemical or oil spills. The information forensic scientists collect is utilized by various groups, including public health organizations.
Physicians are classified as MDs (medical doctors) or DOs (doctors of osteopathic medicine). MDs are trained in allopathic medicine, while DOs are trained in osteopathic medicine.
Mental health professionals assist children, adolescents, and adults. Those specializing in counseling work with individuals, couples, and groups. Many mental health professionals specialize in marriage, substance abuse, career, and family counseling.
Nurses also work as patient advocates and raise awareness about various public health problems in their communities. They design and oversee nursing care plans, teach patients about disease prevention, and assist doctors with various procedures.
Entry-level jobs for nurses can be obtained with a diploma or associate degree in nursing, which usually takes 1 to 3 years to complete, but most organizations prefer to fill nursing positions with applicants holding a bachelor's degree in nursing. Registered nurses (RNs) interested in upgrading to a master's degree can complete a RN-to-MSN degree in nursing.
- Clinical Nurse Specialist
- Nurse Anesthetist
- Nurse Educator
- Nurse Midwife
- Nurse Practitioner
- Nurse Researcher
- Occupational Health Nurse
- Pediatric Nurse
- Public Health Nurse
- Registered Nurse (RN)
- Vocational/Licensed Practical Nurse
- Critical Care Nurse
- Emergency Nurse
- Hospice/Palliative Care Nurse
- Labor & Delivery Nurse
- Neonatal Nurse
- Nephrology Nurse
- Nurse Executive
- Oncology Nurse
- Orthopaedic Nurse
- Perioperative (O.R.) Nurse
- Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse
- School Nurse
- Staff Nurse
Dieticians specialize in the link between health and nutrition. Dietitians develop nutrition plans for people struggling with disease and other health problems. They often design preventative health nutrition plans.
Since a growing number of people suffer from ankle and feet problems, the demand for podiatric doctors is on the rise.
- Behavioral Science/Health Education
- Biomedical & Laboratory Practice
- Environmental Health Sciences
- Global Health
- Health Policy Specialist
- Health Services Administration
- Medical and Health Services Manager
- Maternal and Child Health
- Public Health Practice & Program Management
Sports medicine is growing in popularity as a career. In addition to assisting athletes, sports medicine specialists work with non-athletes recovering from injury, individuals striving to get in shape, or those training for marathons. They also teach people with disabilities how to exercise properly.
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