2018’s Best Career Opportunities in Allied Healthcare
Hopefully, you’re already are familiar with the many advantages of becoming an allied healthcare professional. Primarily, you can be assured you’re entering a field where you’re needed in an industry that is largely recession-proof. Unlike the telecommunications and retail sectors, healthcare is not known for making huge cuts to its workforce to meet the bottom line. In fact, it’s one of the fastest growing sectors in the United States. Allied health also has the distinct benefit of a shorter educational timeline, usually ranging from a few months to a couple years, depending on the chosen field. After which, you can immediately join the workforce with the added confidence of knowing your career path is set in one of the most reliable industries in the world. The only issue with choosing a career in allied health is that there’s almost too much choice. There’s so many different routes to take that choosing one can be overwhelming. That’s why we’re listing some of our favorites here today to make the decision a little bit easier.
Medical Assistant: It is perhaps one of the most loaded job descriptions in field. Medical Assistants (MAs) perform both administrative and clinical tasks. This means that your duties could range from answering phones and making appointments to sterilizing and prepping instruments before a procedure. Or, depending on the facility, you may specialize in one or the other. Administrative MAs operate on the office side of things: handling paperwork, contacting insurance companies, and collecting patient information. Clinical MAs work directly with nurses and doctors, performing tasks like lab tests, explaining prescriptions to patients, and taking vitals.
The educational requirements for this field is a certificate (which can be obtained in a year or less) or an associate degree (obtained in two years or less). The national average entry level pay for a Medical Assistant is around $33,000 per year.
Medical Coder: Want to be purely on the technical side of things? Then Medical Coding might be the route for you. The role of a Medical Coder in allied healthcare is akin to an interpreter. You read the chart of the patient, analyze the diagnosis and procedures, then categorize them using the corresponding alpha-numeric codes. For all intents and purposes, medical coding is the universal shorthand of the healthcare industry and requires an analytical mind with proficient memorization skills. Most coders will spend the majority of their day boiling down extensive notations to a series of letters and numbers. It is a position in extremely high-demand and can lead to bigger opportunities with ongoing education and training.
The educational requirements for this field is a certificate (which can be obtained in a year or less) or an associate degree (obtained in two years or less). The national average entry level pay for a Medical Coder is around $34,000 per year.
Surgical Technologist: Ordinary days don’t exist in the life of a Surgical Tech. In this role, you will work in the operating room along with surgeons and nurses, distributing tools, and assisting in various invasive procedures. The operating room is your office. This is truly a hands-on position in every sense of the word. Paperwork is minimal, but the trade-off is that the day-to-day of a Surgical Tech is active and intense. The ideal person can stay calm under pressure knowing that a life hangs in the balance. Demand for this position in allied healthcare is extremely high and is one of the fastest growing careers in the marketplace. If you’re organized, a team player, and have a strong stomach, being a Surgical Tech might be the job for you.
The educational requirement for this field is a two-year associate degree. The national average entry level pay for a Surgical Technologist is around $44,000 per year.