The youngest members of the baby boom generation are now in their 50s. As more and more people turn to healthcare for help, the demand for healthcare workers is only going to rise.
As the population ages, we are seeing a greater need for healthcare professionals, as well as 7.3 million new enrollees in 2014. As more uninsured people sign up for insurance, we can expect those numbers to keep rising.
Taking a look at the projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, you’ll notice they’re all in the double digits. That’s great news for people looking for work in the healthcare industry who already have a degree and for students who are still deciding on a career path.
BLS website was used to source all salaries, education requirements and employment growth projections. Payscale.com was used if a particular career was not listed on the BLS website.
See what I mean? The following line is now complete, so let’s move on. Can you make out the tiniest of lines? How are you viewing it? Do you have glasses or are you looking at it with your own eyes? Chances are, if you’re using reading glasses, you’ve run into an optometrist.
Ophthalmologists treat eyes; optometrists are doctors of optometry, who focus on corrective lenses rather than medicine.) Optometrists examine vision, prescribe lenses, and occasionally prescribe medication for minor eye disorders; some even perform basic surgeries.
To help people see better but aren’t interested in surgery or treating major diseases like cancer, optometry may be the career path for you. The good you can do patients and the money you’ll make make it a very rewarding career.
The average worker earns $97,000 annually.
Doctorate in Philosophy (PhD)
Between 2012 and 2022, there is expected to be a 24% increase in employment.
2. Licensed Practical Nurse
A Registered Nurse (RN) achieves the ideal work-life balance between education, salary, and responsibility. Even with only an associate’s degree and a license, it is possible to become a registered nurse in as little as two or three years and earn a good salary.
You spend a lot of time with patients, assessing their well-being, making sure they are comfortable, and taking care of all the various tasks that arise (medicines, needles, monitors, and bandages). Work as a school or camp nurse or in a specialty such as pediatrics or intensive care if you prefer. Traveling nursing jobs can be very lucrative for some nurses.
It’s not an easy job; you’ll spend a lot of time on your feet and you’ll be under a lot of stress during your shifts. After all, you’re in charge of people’s lives. However, good nurses will never be short of work, and the more experience you gain, the more sway you’ll have in negotiating your salary.
- The average salary is $65,000. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 19%.
3. Residency in Respiratory Care
Breathe in and out. That’s great! Is there any way you could fail? Breathing is a daily struggle for millions of Americans. An expert in breathing disorders, such as asthma, COPD, or emphysema, is needed to help alleviate symptoms, perform therapy to strengthen the lungs and practice preventative care. A Respiratory Therapist is the name of this specialist.
Respiratory therapists must stay up-to-date on the latest techniques and treatments throughout their careers, but even with only an associate’s degree, they can get into one of the highest-paying professions. Premature babies, children, adults with chronic lung diseases, and the elderly are just a few of the populations that respiratory therapists treat, and demand for their services is only expected to rise in the years to come.
- Salary: $56,000 on average. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 19%.
4. Administrator of a hospital
Hospital Administrators are in high demand as the medical sector continues to grow at an unprecedented rate. Their job is to maintain the hospital’s legal and financial standing, as well as its personnel and physical facilities in good working condition. Despite the fact that they do not have direct contact with patients, they ensure that a hospital is available and staffed with professionals who can care for the sick and injured in case of emergency.
Whether the hospital is for-profit or not-for-profit, the administrators are responsible for ensuring that it is profitable and able to continue providing services. Administrators are responsible for anything that goes wrong, so they are frequently called upon to speak to the media and be available in case of an emergency. And they’re paid a lot of money for that responsibility. A Master’s degree in Business Administration is recommended, but some administrators are pursuing a Doctor of Public Health degree as well.
- The average worker earns $97,000 annually. Master’s degree level of education. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 23%.
5. Engineers in the field of biomedical engineering
It’s exciting to work in medicine because you get to use all of the cutting-edge tools, machines, and gadgets that are constantly being developed. Biomedical engineers are the ones responsible for these amazing creations; they don’t just appear out of thin air. Biomedical research and development facilities have spawned a slew of medical breakthroughs in recent years, from brain-controlled prosthetics to imaging machines that can show the hair on a growing fetus.
Think about biomedical engineering for those who enjoy working in the lab and creating things that will improve or save people’s lives. It’s easy to get started with a bachelor’s degree, and the pay is great for the level of education required.
- Eighty-seven thousand dollars a year. Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, projected employment growth is 27%.
6. Oral Health Care Provider
You’ll be poking around in other people’s mouths all day, can you you get past that thought process? Yes, you’ll be fine if that’s the case. Once you’ve cleaned some teeth, checked for gingivitis and other oral diseases, applied some sealant, and helped with fillings, your shift is done in a jiffy.
They are part of a team that includes dentists and dental hygienists. As a result, it should go without saying that you should have excellent interpersonal and communication skills. This position requires only a two-year degree from an accredited college or university.
- Salary: $71,210 on average. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 33%.
7. Doctors of dermatology
Who has a soft spot for their own skin? Is it true that you see no flaws and are unconcerned? Because of this, dermatologists will always have a place in the medical community. But it’s not just about getting rid of wrinkles and moles. Life-threatening skin cancers, disfiguring scars, painful skin conditions that make life miserable, and good preventative habits can all be treated by dermatologists.
A dermatologist is a medical doctor, not just a certification. You’ll need a lot of education before you can practice. However, you won’t have any problems repaying your student loans. In California, where good skin goes on your resume, the median income is around $300,000, and it can be even higher. Doesn’t this make you wonder why you haven’t already become a dermatologist?
- Pay: $300,000 per year. A doctorate degree is required. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 18%.
8. Doctor of Chiropractic (DC)
All the muscles and nerves that are attached to the spine are examined by chiropractors, as well as the spine itself. As a layperson, that means a lot of stretching and joint-cracking. When you work as a chiropractor, you have to do a little bit of everything, from working with computer imaging to doing some therapeutic massage. Because every patient’s pain is unique, you should never be afraid to try something new.
Chiropractic might be a good option if you want to work in the medical field but are more of a lone wolf. The majority of chiropractors are self-employed. In addition to your medical degree, a background in business and marketing is a good idea because you’ll have to wear a lot of hats. You can even make your own late-night local TV commercial if you take a video course.
- $66,000 is the average yearly wage in this industry. A doctorate degree is required. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to rise by 16 percent.
9. Podiatrist (foot doctor)
In truth, the human foot is a mess. It simply cannot withstand the abuse we subject it to as a result of our haphazard stomping on sidewalks and hard floors in inappropriate footwear. As if that wasn’t enough, we’re constantly adding to their burdens. It’s a miracle that they’ve been able to last as long as they have. However, foot pain or illness affects nearly everyone at some point in their lives. Warts and bunions and more complex conditions like diabetes and club foot are all treated by podiatrist, who is a doctor of podiatric medicine.
Podiatrists benefit greatly from the active lifestyles of Baby Boomers, the medical profession’s patron saints. A podiatrist is a necessity for any woman in her 60s who is unable to train for a marathon due to heel spurs. All men who have broken an ankle while rollerblading need one. As a result, it’s no surprise that this field is rapidly expanding and paying well. We’ll do whatever it takes to keep us moving.
- Salary: $116,000 on average. A doctorate degree is required. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 23%.
10. Physician’s Assistant (PA).
Physician Assistants work in urgent care centers all over the country. Because PAs are trained to do virtually everything a doctor does – perform exams, diagnose illnesses, and even write prescriptions – you may not have realized that he or she was not technically a doctor. For example, they cannot perform surgery themselves and must rely on human assistance. On the other hand, if you have an everyday illness or injury, a Physician Assistant can handle everything.
PAs can work in any specialty a doctor can, from neonatal to geriatric. Despite the fact that you’ll be part of a team, you’ll still be responsible for your actions. For one thing, you can finish the degree in less time and with less student loan debt if you go for the master’s degree.
- With an average yearly wage of $90,000. Master’s degree level of education. Between 2012 and 2022, projected employment growth is 38%.
11. Speech-Language Pathology
Many people associate speech pathologists with treating stuttering and lisps, but in reality, speech pathologists deal with a wide range of conditions. There are programs for both children and adults who have been affected by neurological disorders like stroke or Parkinson’s disease. Speech pathologists can also help treat infant feeding difficulties, such as difficulties sucking or swallowing. This is surprising.
Speech pathologists are commonly employed in schools and senior care facilities, and they often collaborate with an audiologist or educator. Even though it may be difficult, helping someone who has lost or never had the ability to communicate break through is extremely rewarding in this profession, which only requires a master’s degree.
- Salary: $69,000 on average. Master’s degree level of education. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 19%.
In the pharmacy, have you ever wondered, “Wouldn’t it be nice to get paid to count pills all day?” You have no idea what you’re missing. A pharmacist’s job requires a high level of technical expertise, and the health and well-being of their patients, if not their lives, are in their hands. It’s up to the pharmacist to make sure the prescription is filled correctly and to explain how it should be used to patients after a doctor has made a diagnosis and prescribed a treatment plan.
A pharmacist must have a Doctor of Pharmacy degree, which is nearly as demanding as a medical doctorate, because the pharmacist profession is so important.
To gain practical experience and a license, you’ll need to work in a pharmacy while you’re a student. Benefits include freedom from the demands of working in an emergency room and avoiding exposure to blood and bodily fluids. As long as you don’t get sneezed on, it’s a hygienic job with a lot of responsibility and the money to back it up.
- Salary: $116,000 on average. A doctorate degree is required. Between 2012 and 2022, there is expected to be a 14 percent increase in employment.
13. A therapist who administers radiation therapy
As a radiation therapist, your job duties are simple: you administer radiation treatments to cancer patients (though a few other, rare diseases benefit from radiation). Working with oncologists to devise a treatment plan, administering treatments, interpreting results, advising patients on side effects, and determining when treatments should be stopped or continued.
This is a significant position with a high salary for someone with only an associate’s degree. Think about it: in just two or three years, you could be saving lives. As a Radiation Therapist, you’ll be one step closer to that goal in a matter of months.
- Salary: $77,000 on average. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, there is expected to be a 24% increase in employment.
14. Radiation Therapy Technologist
An associate’s degree is all that’s required for this medical position, which comes with a lot of responsibilities and an easy job description. As part of the diagnostic process, the Nuclear Medical Technician administers a radioactive medication, then uses imaging equipment to conduct a scan and analyzes the results on a computer. That includes tests for intestinal, cardiovascular, and brain disorders.
For the most part, a Nuclear Medicine Technologist works in a hospital, though some work for doctors or in clinics. There’s never been a better time to enter the field of nuclear medicine than now.
- $70,000 is the average yearly salary. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, the number of people employed is expected to grow by 20%.
Hearing loss is a major concern for many people, whether it’s due to age-related hearing loss or the yearly ear infections that children get. A hearing test is probably all that most people know about audiology because they’ve had one at some point in their lives. Tinnitus (ringing in the ears), inner ear disorders like Ménière’s disease, and all forms of hearing loss are all treated by the audiologist. Audiologists and cochlear implant specialists.
Audiologists don’t have to worry about running out of patients anytime soon thanks to iPod earbuds and Beats by Dre. Since cochlear implants are becoming more common, advancements in hearing recovery are occurring at a faster rate than the general population.
- Salary: $69,000 on average. A doctorate degree is required. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 34%.
16. Physical therapists make up the sixteenth profession.
A young baseball pitcher tears a ligament and must undergo rehabilitation; a grandmother undergoes hip replacement surgery and must practice walking on her new part. A Physical Therapist is needed by all of these people.
Sports medicine, geriatrics, orthopedics, and other subspecialties are common places for physical therapists to practice. Patients’ mobility, range of motion, and quality of life can all be improved by physical therapists using a variety of techniques. For those who want to work directly with patients and help them achieve visible results, physical therapy is a great career choice.
- The average worker earns $79,000 a year. A doctorate degree is required. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to grow by 36%.
17. Doctors of Nursing Practice
A career as a Nurse Practitioner is a viable option for any nursing student, whether or not they already have a BSN. A master’s-level program in nursing that goes beyond the basics is known as a Nurse Practitioner. The duties of a Nurse Practitioner are similar to those of a doctor, including diagnosis and treatment prescription, but they are carried out under the guidance of a doctor.
Many NPs work in hospitals, urgent care centers, schools, and nursing homes, and with the additional education and responsibility comes a raise in salary. Nurse Practitioners are in high demand, which bodes well for their careers, which are expected to continue to expand in the near future.
- Average Pay: $96,000. Master’s degree level of education. Between 2012 and 2022, projected job growth is 31%.
18. Occupational Therapist (Occupational Therapy)
As a result of a physical or mental disorder, millions of people find everyday tasks like brushing their teeth and cleaning up after meals difficult. When it comes to improving a patient’s quality of life, occupational therapists are the experts. Examples include helping autistic children learn more positive habits, reorganizing the belongings of elderly people whose mobility has been compromised, and assisting brain-damaged adults re-learn basic life skills while working around their injuries.
You must have a Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy in order to become an occupational therapist (OT). You may work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, group homes, and more, writing treatment plans and sometimes leading a team of assistants.
- Salary: $75,000 a year. Master’s degree level of education. Between 2012 and 2022, projected employment growth is 29%.
19. Anesthesiologist/Physician Assistant
Seeing a sonogram image of your baby for the first time is one of the most exciting moments in a new parent’s life. That miracle is made possible by a Sonographer. Medical Sonographers use imaging equipment like ultrasound to examine the fetus, look for damage to organs such as the heart or intestine, or look for breast cancers, among other things. A few sonographers lend a hand during operations.
Sonography, unlike X-rays, uses no radiation and is completely safe for both the operator and the patient. This may be a source of anxiety for some. A well-paying career in sonography can be entered with as little as an associate’s degree.
- A median salary of $60,000. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, projected growth in employment is 39%.
20. Technologist in Diagnostic Radiology
To have seen human bones with x-rays for the first time must have seemed like a dream come true for Wilhelm Rontgen. An associate’s degree and certification are all that’s needed these days to peer beneath the skin of others. So why not become a radiologic technologist?? There are many places you can find work as a medical technician: hospitals, medical clinics and physician’s offices.
There are many specializations within the Radiologic Technologist profession, such as becoming an MRI Technician, which typically pays more. You can also specialize in pediatrics, sports medicine, or mammography.
- Salary: $56,000 on average. Associate’s degree in a relevant field of study. Between 2012 and 2022, employment is expected to rise by a total of 21 percent.