Healthcare has been a highly visible industry lately. Recent times have exposed the highlights and low points of a vital societal need. They have also shown us the importance of the workers who have chosen a career in medicine.
Coming out of the pandemic there may be no better time to enter the healthcare field than now.
Healthcare includes a variety of roles, each with its own unique demands, rewards, responsibilities, and impacts on personal lives. While healthcare professionals may often experience negative emotions, they also feel great satisfaction in their work. So, what are the major reasons many choose to have a career in healthcare?
Fulfilling, Stimulating Work
Healthcare professionals make a difference in other peoples' lives, which is often why research shows that HCPs are fundamentally satisfied with their career choices. And many HCPs experience a fast-paced workday within a continually changing atmosphere, providing daily stimulation.
Healthcare workers also encounter a rich diversity of people among coworkers and patients, each providing unique opportunities to grow and learn. In this field, there is so much variety in terms of people you’ll meet, problems you will address, and places you may go that healthcare is a natural place for the adventurous or curious person.
Relative to other industries, many careers in the healthcare industry offer an above-average salary. This is especially true if you work in a hospital setting or for government organizations.
In May 2020, the median annual wage for healthcare practitioners and technical occupations (registered nurses, physicians and surgeons, and dental hygienists) was $69,870, while healthcare support occupations such as home health aides, occupational therapy assistants, and medical transcriptionists – which are often career starting points – earned a median annual wage of $29,960.
Strong Industry Outlook
Due to the aging Baby Boomer population and fallout from the COVID-19 outbreak, job security in the healthcare industry is at an all-time high. The demand for workers is continuing to expand, with an anticipated growth rate of 16% from 2020 to 2030.
In addition, the healthcare field is vast, offering opportunities in a variety of compelling careers regardless of your skills or background. The medical needs of an aging generation mean the healthcare industry will continuing to expand, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting the healthcare field to add approximately 2.4 million new jobs during 2019–2029.
Opportunities for all Educational Levels
Whether you have a GED or a Ph.D., there's a healthcare career for you – with literally hundreds of positions available for those with almost any academic certification (high school diploma, bachelor’s degree, advanced degree, etc.).
A minority of roles require eight years of schooling and a residency before you can begin your healthcare career. On the other hand, healthcare jobs like surgical technologists, radiologic technologists, and lab technicians require a more easily accessible associate degree. Still others, such as pharmacy technicians or medical assistants, require education that can be completed in less time than it takes to achieve an associate degree.
Flexibility in Schedule, Lifestyle & Location
Healthcare may be needed anywhere, at any time. Many roles offer HCPs flexibility in when and where they work.
For instance, most patient-centered positions allow a flexible work schedule, overnights/weekends only opportunities, or even three-day workweeks. Other roles may allow you to work remotely. Almost every region in the U.S., for example, has a strong demand for healthcare professionals, meaning that you can live and work almost anywhere and build the lifestyle you imagine.
The recent pandemic has shown us that the demand for healthcare workers is on the rise. If these reasons appeal to you, consider starting your healthcare career today!