The ability to help others compels many people towards the health professions. Fortunately, health professions are always in-demand because the entire human population needs to either stay healthy or get healthy again. When people think of the health professions, they often think of the healthcare professionals that they interact with on a regular basis (e.g. doctor, nurse, medical assistant, etc.). In reality, there are many health professions and the duties are diverse. If you are thinking about pursuing a career in the health sector in 2019, you have many options to choose from.
In-Demand Health Professions 2019
Community Health Educator
Community health educators educate the community on how to live healthy lives. They help develop programs and materials to disseminate accurate health information, speak to groups of people on a health topic (e.g. sexual health, safe bicycle riding, mindfulness meditation, etc.) , conduct research to tailor their goals to a specific population, and meet with individuals to discuss personal health concerns and answer questions.
Community health educators work in a variety of settings, including government agencies, clinics, universities, nonprofit organizations, K-12 schools, corporate companies, religious organizations, etc.). The projected job growth rate is 13 percent, which is about twice as average. An undergraduate degree in health education, public health, health sciences, psychology, sociology, or social work is required for most entry-level positions. A master’s degree is preferred or required for more upper-level positions.
Health coaches have similar job duties as community health educators because they also educate people about health. However, their job is more focused on nutrition and fitness. Health coaches may work one-on-one with people more than health educators. While health coaches can work in similar settings as community health educators, many of them find success in having their own business on the side or as their full-time job. The projected job growth rate is 13 percent. The education requirements are the same as a community health educator.
Registered nurses assist with patient care by administering medications, treating wounds, assisting with diagnostic tests, checking vital signs, communicating with physicians, and providing emotional support to patients and their families. Registered nurses commonly work in hospitals, outpatient clinics and practices, and schools. The projected job growth is 15 percent. The education requirements are at least an associate’s degree, but a bachelor’s degree opens up many more doors.
Home Health Aide
Home health aides assist the elderly or disabled with daily tasks such as showering, eating, getting into bed, going out shopping, etc. Home health aides commonly work in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and home health agencies. The projected job growth rate is a whopping 47 percent. The education requirements are a certificate from a certificate program.
Phlebotomists draw people’s blood to be tested by a laboratory. They commonly work in laboratories, hospitals, doctor’s offices, and clinics. The projected job growth rate is 25 percent. The education requirements are a certificate from a technical career program.
Medical technologists test blood and other bodily fluids and samples for disease and other information in a laboratory setting. Accuracy is critical in this profession because their work dictates how doctors proceed in patient care. The projected job growth rate is 14 percent. The education requirements are a bachelor’s degree and -in some states- a license. The projected job growth rate is 14 percent.
Substance abuse counselors are mental health professionals that help people overcome their addiction to alcohol, drugs, gambling, or other compulsive behaviors. They may also The mental health crisis and addiction epidemic makes the projected job growth rate 22 percent. The education requirements range from a certificate to a master’s degree.
Geriatric Social Worker
Geriatric social workers help older adults get access to the resources and care they need for their health and wellness. The projected job growth rate is 19 percent. The education requirements are a bachelor’s degree. A master’s degree is preferred.
Have a Career that Makes You Healthy and Happy
Health professions are a rewarding career because they allow you to help people and offer hope to them on a daily basis. The various work environments, salaries, job, growth, duties, and educational pathways mean that there is a health profession for almost anybody. Doing work that you love takes the work out of work. The health courses you will have to take will be on a variety of interesting topics (e.g. social and behavioral health). You are going to have to work for several decades to support yourself and your family, so you might as well be satisfied for several decades.