What do you plan to do for a living? This is a major decision that can’t be taken lightly. That’s not to say that a career choice is a lifetime commitment. There’s always the opportunity to make adjustments or even a bold move as your circumstances change. At CAHE, some students are at the beginning of their career, while others have worked outside of the healthcare industry and are now getting an education to change the path they’re on.
Ask yourself: Which industry and occupation will allow me to reach my definition of success? Determine what’s most important to you. Think about salary, job security, growth opportunities, geography circumstances, and anything else that would impact your achievement potential. Here are reasons why healthcare may be the right decision.
#1 Phenomenal Growth
The healthcare field is exploding. Baby boomers are now seniors, and people are living longer. There are a record-breaking 50 million people age 65 and older in the United States. This aging population requires more medical care and sophisticated treatments. The medical field is working nonstop to keep up with these demands. New advancements require specialized workers, which provide opportunities that span the industry. The goal of healthcare providers is to keep longevity worthwhile by providing seniors with a comfortable quality of life.
#2 Impressive Salaries
Salaries vary greatly based on specialization, education, and experience. Look at salary estimates and other data for healthcare occupations at the Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Healthcare workers can oftentimes expect a gratifying paycheck for rewarding work.
Benefits are an important part of any job compensation package. Whether employed by a hospital, medical practice, or in another healthcare environment, one can generally expect to find excellent working conditions with numerous perks. Benefit package can include healthcare, paid time off and leave, savings plans, life insurance, short- and long-term disability, and pension plans. Some healthcare employers will also contribute to continuing education to help maintain their employees’ skill set and improve their knowledge.
#4 Opportunity for advancement
The huge growth in the healthcare field provides advancement opportunities for its workers. As employees gain experience, master the requirements of their job, or add to their knowledgebase, employers may welcome the chance to give them additional responsibilities – which could result in a promotion. Many healthcare positions will offer better opportunities for employees who receive advanced certifications and degrees.
#5 Professional Flexibility
There are so many choices for individuals working in healthcare. Some people prefer to work with patients; others are more comfortable behind the scenes. Skill sets vary, and there are healthcare jobs for those who work well with numbers, technology, or people. Consider various work environments. Healthcare employees may work in a large, busy facility such as a hospital, or a calm, quiet setting such as a doctor’s office or a lab. There are various medical fields and doctor specializations for qualified workers, such as geriatric, pediatrics, dentistry, internal medicine, orthopedics, and the list goes on.
#6 Personal Flexibility
In healthcare, workers aren’t forced into a 9 to 5 work week. In fact, in many cases that isn’t a viable option! Hospital work requires night shifts, weekends, and even holiday coverage. But employees are compensated well for these “inconveniences.” A doctor’s office would offer a more customary work schedule for people who want a more predictable work week. Many healthcare occupations offer part-time work. This might be important to consider based on lifestyle goals.
#7 Make a Difference
Regardless of the job title, skill set, or work environment, or whether it’s a patient-facing role or work behind the scenes; healthcare workers know that their professional contributions have a positive impact on patients’ quality of life. Many contribute to saving lives. Feel free to move this up to the #1 reason to join the healthcare field.
Later this month we will follow up with an article that will look at the unique characteristics and personality traits that will help students determine what type of healthcare career is the best fit.