COVID pandemic inspires new generation of medics -- Jan 14
With a workforce consisting of more than 18 million people, the healthcare sector is a major employer in the U.S.

It’s also the fastest-growing industry in the country, which means many more jobs are set to be created in the next few years.

While the importance of the healthcare sector is never in doubt, we’ve never been so aware of just how essential our healthcare infrastructure is. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact millions of people, we’ve been more reliant on the skill, knowledge and compassion of healthcare workers than ever before.

As a new, more contagious, variant of COVID-19 takes us into the third wave of the pandemic, hospitals, clinics and medical facilities are under more pressure than ever. Despite this, the determination and courage of today’s healthcare workers is already inspiring tomorrow’s doctors, nurses and caregivers.

What Does a Career in Healthcare Look Like?

The healthcare sector is a vast industry, which means there are numerous options when it comes to careers. From surgeons and consultants to nurses, anesthesiologists and physiotherapists, there are a wide variety of roles and specialisms. This is, perhaps, one reason why so many people choose a career in healthcare. With the chance to find a role that utilizes your unique skills and talents, you can be confident that being a healthcare worker gives you the opportunity to reach your potential.

Although there are endless different roles within the industry, they do all have one thing in common: the chance to do good. Every healthcare worker plays an essential role in providing care when patients are at their most vulnerable. When it comes to job satisfaction, it doesn’t get much better!

Becoming a Healthcare Worker

As you might expect, there are numerous routes into the healthcare sector. Generally, you’ll need to complete specific training, depending on what specialty or role you want to pursue. If you want to become a doctor, consultant or surgeon, for example, you’ll usually apply to medical school to complete an M.D, following a bachelor’s degree, before securing a residency and sitting licensure exams.

If you want to become a nurse, you’ll need to complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing or an Associate of Science in Nursing degree, before sitting the NCLEX-RN exam to become a Registered Nurse (RN). From there, you can enhance your skills and responsibility with advanced study. An experienced RN may undertake an accredited online DNP program to become a Nurse Practitioner or Nurse Educator, for example.

For aspiring anesthesiologists, training typically involves a bachelor’s degree, four years at medical school and a further four years of residency, along with the completion of relevant licensure examinations.

While some roles within the healthcare industry require years of training, there are other positions which don’t require such intensive study periods. You can begin your career as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) and complete the requisite training in a matter of weeks, for example. For many people, the ability to gain practical experience in an entry level role, while studying online to increase their skills, is the perfect way to forge a career in the healthcare industry.

What Does the Future of Healthcare Look Like?

If you’re thinking about joining the healthcare industry, now could be the ideal time to begin pursuing your goal. For people who are ready to begin working in healthcare straight away, the pandemic has ensured there are numerous roles available. Indeed, the increased demand for healthcare workers across various disciplines means it’s currently relatively easy to find a role in the industry.

In the longer term, the healthcare industry is set to grow, which means a significant number of new jobs will be created within the next decade. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, healthcare employment is expected to grow by 15% between 2019-2029, which equates to around 2.4 million new jobs.

For anyone considering joining the industry, or for existing healthcare professionals who are deciding whether to commit to further study, the projected industry growth should ensure a wealth of opportunities over the next few years. While many sectors will decline in response to the economic impact of COVID-19, the healthcare industry is set to be one of the few that will go from strength to strength.

Is a Healthcare Career Right for You?

A career in healthcare can certainly be challenging, but it’s also one of the most rewarding professions out there. Whether you choose to train as a nurse, qualify as a doctor or deliver patient care as a Certified Nursing Assistant, you’ll have the opportunity to make a positive impact on people’s lives.

When it comes to the practicalities of working in the healthcare industry, there are a lot of benefits to consider. Healthcare is a 24/7 sector, which means there is a decent amount of flexibility when it comes to working patterns. Similarly, you can choose whether to work in a hospital, doctor’s office or outpatient setting, depending on your specific role.

Another advantage of working in the healthcare sector is the ability to work in any location. Although each state has its own licensing requirements, an experienced healthcare worker can typically obtain the relevant licensure if they want to transfer to a new location. Furthermore, if you ever decide to emigrate and live overseas, it’s highly likely that your qualifications and experience will be recognized and respected.

When you’re choosing your future career or deciding whether to switch to a new industry, there are numerous factors to consider. From your earning capacity and job security to working environments and job responsibilities, you’ll want to research every aspect of your future career to ensure it’s the right fit for you.

However, if you’re looking for a role that allows you to have a major impact on the lives of others, that offers a high level of job satisfaction and that has endless opportunities for progression and growth, a career in healthcare certainly might be the right option for you.

News source:
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