The healthcare industry is enormous, encompassing everything from hospitals and doctor’s offices to insurance companies and pharmaceutical manufacturers. With the advancement of technology, the healthcare sector is also one of the most rapidly growing industries, with a projected growth rate of 14% from 2019 to 2029. There will be nearly two million new jobs in the healthcare industry by 2029!
Whether you’ve recently finished high school or already working in another field, pursuing a degree in healthcare may be the right decision for you.
Types of Healthcare Degrees
Healthcare degrees are available at all levels, from associate’s degrees to doctoral degrees. The degree you pursue will depend on your career goals and educational background. Some of the most prevalent healthcare degrees include:
Associate’s Degree in Nursing
This degree is for those who want to become registered nurses. Registered nurses make up the largest occupation in healthcare, with over three million jobs in 2019. The role of R.N.s is to care for patients, educate patients and their families on health and illness prevention, and collaborate with other healthcare team members.
Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing
For those who want to pursue a career in nursing, a bachelor’s degree is the next step. A BSN provides students with the opportunity to take more advanced coursework in anatomy and physiology, nursing research, and pharmacology. BSN-prepared nurses are better prepared to take on leadership roles and advance their careers.
Master’s Degree in Nursing
If you aim to work as a nurse practitioner, a degree like an FNP MSN degree is the right choice. FNPs are advanced practice registered nurses responsible for providing primary care services to patients of all ages, from newborns to the elderly. In addition to taking coursework in areas such as nursing theory and research, FNPs also complete clinical rotations in various healthcare settings.
Doctor of Nursing Practice
For those who want to pursue a career in nursing education or healthcare administration, a DNP degree is the right choice. DNPs are prepared to assume leadership roles and improve patient outcomes through evidence-based practice. In addition to taking coursework in nursing theory, research, and statistics, DNPs also complete a capstone project.
What comes to your mind when you recall the nurse you encountered when you had to stay at the hospital last time? Caring? Supportive? Attentive? These qualities are essential for anyone working in healthcare. In addition, healthcare workers must be able to effectively communicate with patients and their families and other members of the healthcare team.
If you’re considering pursuing a healthcare degree, you must keep yourself updated with the latest industry news, technology, and treatments. There’s demand, but there’s also competition. Healthcare is an ever-changing field, and those who work in healthcare must be lifelong learners.
Benefits of Pursuing a Healthcare Degree
There’s so much a healthcare degree brings to the table. Here are a few benefits of pursuing a healthcare degree:
Diverse Medical Career and Opportunities
If you have been exiting with an ideology that nurses and healthcare professionals are limited to working in a hospital, you couldn’t have been more wrong. The healthcare industry offers a colossal range of opportunities for career growth. You can work in a hospital, but you can also work in a clinic, long-term care facility, home health agency, or even a school. The fields of interest are also diverse. You can choose to work in a specific area of medicine, such as pediatrics, oncology, or cardiology.
Job Satisfaction and Personal Fulfillment
One of the most rewarding aspects of working in healthcare is knowing that you are making a difference in the lives of others. Whether you are caring for a patient, educating a family on health and wellness, or collaborating with other healthcare team members to improve patient outcomes, you can take pride in knowing that you are playing a role in keeping your community healthy.
In addition, healthcare workers often report high levels of job satisfaction. They appreciate the opportunity to work with a team of dedicated professionals and have a challenging and rewarding career.
When you pursue a healthcare degree, you join a community of like-minded individuals passionate about making a difference in the lives of others. This community provides support, both professionally and personally. You can rely on your fellow healthcare workers for advice, mentorship, and even friendship. Moreover, these communities’ network channels come in handy both during the job hunt and throughout your career.
A Stable and Growing Industry
Most sectors experience a fluctuation in the job market, but the healthcare industry is predicted to continue growing steadily. The reasons extend from an aging population to advances in medical technology. The world requires a greater number of doctors. According to the Telegraph, “The World Health Organization (WHO) predicted in 2013 that by 2030, low- and middle-income nations would be short 14.5 million, healthcare workers.”
As a healthcare worker, it means that you are more likely to find a stable job with good job security. You can also expect to see a steady rise in salary (discussed below) and opportunities for career advancement. All you have to do is continue learning and keeping up to date with the latest advances in healthcare.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, healthcare practitioners and technical workers had a median annual salary of $69,870 in May 2020, greater than the economy-wide average of $41,950 for all occupations. In other words, healthcare workers earn, on average, over $30,000 more per year than the median wage for all occupations. That’s not even factoring in the potential for overtime pay or earning a salary that falls on the higher end of the spectrum. Of course, your salary will depend on several factors, such as your education, experience, specialty, and geographic location.
We believe that being a healthcare provider, whether it’s a doctor, nurse, or any other type of medical professional, is one of the noblest professions. They have dedicated their lives to caring for others. It’s a career that is both challenging and rewarding, with opportunities for personal and professional growth. If you are considering pursuing a healthcare degree, we hope this article has given you some food for thought.