The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that demand for health care professionals will continue to rise over the next few years, resulting in positive prospects for those pursuing a medical education and career.
Medical Careers: Future Outlook
Have you always dreamed of becoming a doctor? Does a career in a medical center as a nurse, pharmacist, or medical researcher intrigue you? If you’re interested in entering a program in medical studies and using your education to make a real difference in people’s lives, then medicine and health care may be the right career for you.
Careers in Medicine
With a broad spectrum of careers in medicine, the number of available health care jobs continues to increase nationwide. The medical field employed 14.3 million people in 2008, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects that number to rise as 3.2 million new health care jobs are created between 2008 and 2018.
Not surprisingly, about 40 percent of all health care jobs are based in hospitals. The rest are mainly in nursing and palliative care facilities (21 percent) and in physician’s offices and smaller medical practices (another 16 percent). While medical jobs can be found in all parts of the country, a majority of positions are in larger cities and metropolitan areas, where the major hospitals, medical centers, and research institutions are located.
Although you can pursue whatever type of medical education interests you, it’s a good idea to select a future career in advance so you can focus on the specialized studies and degree required for that position. Whatever field of study you choose, there are job openings all over the country for all types of medical professionals:
– Physicians, surgeons, nurses, nursing aides
– Pharmacists, psychiatrists, other specialist fields
– Medical researchers and educators
– Palliative and hospice care workers
– Physical therapists, exercise and rehabilitation trainers
– Nutrition and preventive medicine professionals
– Medical Studies and Advancements
Medicine is a constantly growing and shifting field, as new technologies and drugs allow for faster and more effective treatment approaches. Unlike other industries, changes in health care are implemented very rapidly and can dramatically affect the way physicians, research technicians, and educators do their work. Despite these changes, the everyday work of nurses, therapists, psychiatrists, rehab experts, and nutritionists is consistently geared toward providing compassionate, competent care to patients.
As the baby boomer generation transitions to the elderly demographic, this generation will require more health care, resulting in an increased demand for professionals who can provide medicine, home care, and nutritional guidance. More than any other demographic, baby boomers are focused on longevity and staying fit and active for as long as possible, creating a corresponding demand for naturopathic care, nutritionists, physical therapists, and other preventive and active care experts.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, home health care services, physicians’ offices, dental offices, diagnostic laboratories, and outpatient care centers will account for the largest growth in the medical field over the next several years, as the health care industry shifts to accommodate the needs of an aging population.