Healthcare continues to be one of the most in-demand industries in the U.S. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports healthcare jobs are expected to grow 16% between 2020 to 2030, which is much faster than the average for all occupations. Around 2.6 million new healthcare jobs are expected to be added.
What’s causing this surge? The BLS mainly attributes it to an aging population. As we’ve seen since the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare workers are essential to care for and protect the population.
Healthcare jobs can provide career advancement opportunities and enable workers to provide vital help to others. If you’re contemplating a career move or are about to enter the workforce, here are five reasons to consider a career in healthcare.
1. There Are Lots of Entry-Level Positions
Not all healthcare positions require a doctorate, master’s or bachelor’s degree. Many positions require an associate’s degree, a postsecondary nondegree award or a high school diploma or equivalent. That means wherever you are in your educational journey, there are entry-level positions available that enable you to work, learn the trade and pursue further education if you want.
Positions with relatively minimal educational requirements include:
- Dental assistant: postsecondary nondegree award
- Dental hygienist: associate’s degree
- EMT and paramedic: postsecondary nondegree award
- Personal care and home health aide: high school diploma or equivalent
- Licensed practical and licensed vocation nurse: postsecondary nondegree award
- Massage therapist: postsecondary nondegree award
- Medical assistant: postsecondary nondegree award
- Medical records and health information specialist: postsecondary nondegree award
- Medical sonographer and cardiovascular technologist and technician: associate’s degree
- Medical transcriptionist: postsecondary nondegree award
- Nuclear medicine technologist: associate’s degree
- Nursing assistant and orderly: high school diploma or equivalent
- Occupational therapy assistant and aide: associate’s degree
- Optician: high school diploma or equivalent
- Pharmacy technician: high school diploma or equivalent
- Phlebotomist: postsecondary nondegree award
- Physical therapist assistant and aide: associate’s degree
- Psychiatric technician and aide: high school diploma or equivalent
- Radiation therapist: associate’s degree
- Radiologic and MRI technologist: associate’s degree
- Respiratory therapist: associate’s degree
- Surgical technologist: postsecondary nondegree award
- Veterinary assistant and laboratory animal caretaker: high school diploma or equivalent
- Veterinary technologist and technician: associate’s degree
As you can see, there are incredibly diverse healthcare fields you can enter with just a high school diploma or equivalent. Wherever you are in your education, there are positions available.
2. You Want to Help People (or Animals)
Healthcare jobs typically fall into a helping profession, where workers get the chance to positively impact people or animals every day at work. For many people, their health is their top priority in life. As a healthcare worker, you can make people feel more confident about their health or bring comfort to individuals and their family members about the state of their health.
Soft skills like empathy, communication and relationship-building are essential for most healthcare professionals. Some of these skills are even focused on in healthcare education programs.
For example, many nursing programs teach Dr. Jean Watson’s caring theory. The ability to feel and show concern and kindness to others is an integral part of nursing professions and many other jobs in healthcare.
3. You’re Interested in Science
Many healthcare professions, especially those that require advanced education, involve a substantial amount of scientific study. Healthcare professionals may study how the body works, how emotions and mental states impact health outcomes, and how various healthcare treatments impact diverse populations.
Even entry-level healthcare professions, such as pharmacy technician or phlebotomist, require science-based care. Whatever role you have in healthcare, there are always opportunities to learn and develop your skills, especially when you connect with a mentor in your field.
4. You Want a Flexible Career
Some healthcare professionals open up their own practices or work for a single provider for many years. But because healthcare is an in-demand field in all parts of the world, a career in healthcare can also take you places – literally.
For example, the travel nurse profession became more in-demand during the pandemic, as nurses traveled to understaffed healthcare settings to support practices in need. There are also many remote-friendly healthcare positions, including transcriptionist, consultant and patient care coordinator.
Even when you work for a physical location, as you gain experience and credentials in the healthcare industry, that positions you for consideration in jobs throughout the country and throughout the world. As long as there’s life on earth, there’s a need for healthcare providers in every location. This industry can give you the ability to find a job if you’re interested in moving or working remotely in the future.
5. Healthcare Jobs Are Ranked Highly
When U.S. News & World Report released its 100 Best Jobs of 2022 list, many healthcare jobs landed prominently in the rankings. Factors like salary, unemployment rate, stress level, future job prospects and work-life balance impacted the rankings. Healthcare jobs that landed in the top 20, and their rankings, include:
- Nurse practitioner: #2
- Physician assistant: #3
- Medical and health services manager: #4
- Physician: #11
- Registered nurse: #12
- Respiratory therapist: #16
- Oral and maxillofacial surgeon: #18
- Nurse anesthetist: #19
If you’re looking for career growth opportunities, job stability and competitive compensation, consider healthcare jobs.
Find a Healthcare Job in Arizona
If the healthcare profession sounds interesting to you, there are thousands of healthcare jobs in Arizona available right now.
Learn more about potential healthcare careers on Pipeline AZ, where we detail 130 healthcare career paths to consider.