Thinking about a career in healthcare? Here’s what you need to know
Healthcare is one of the top three fastest growing fields in Canada, and four of our top 25 jobs for 2016 (positions that are both high paying and in demand) are directly related to healthcare. That number is even higher when you consider the potential overlap between fields – becoming a hospital database administrator, say.
The jobs are there, but here’s what you need to know before setting your sights on one of them.
There are jobs for all personalities
The name kind of says it all – most healthcare professionals are interested in either health, or care, or (ideally) both. On the one side of it, you have people who are fascinated by the inner workings of the human body and medicine – the scientists and technicians. On the other, you have people in the “caring” professions – therapists, social workers, and so on. In between, you have doctors, nurses, pharmacists – roles that balance an interest and connection with people and their biology.
The point is, no matter what your interests or charter, there is a job for you in healthcare – regardless of how hands on you actually want to be.
Even if you feel faint at the sight of blood, a job in healthcare might still work out
The first thing to come to mind when you think “career in healthcare” is likely doctor or nurse, but there are so many potential career paths, including plenty where you don’t have to interact with bodily fluids. Some of the possibilities might surprise (and inspire) you.
If you’re a right-brain meets left-brain type, it’s possible for your career to balance an artistic skill set and an interest in science and biology: possibilities include medical illustrator, writer, or filmmaker. And if you think healthcare and imagine bustling ERs and dramatic, emotionally wrenching scenes, we got good news for you: there are less stressful options. From technicians and pathologists to therapists and dieticians, there are a lot of ways to care for people, minus the drama.
Thinking about long-term career growth, “Healthcare Navigator” made it onto Careers 2030’s list of jobs that are likely to be in high demand in – you guessed it – the year 2030. Jayar LaFontaine, a Foresight Strategist (speaking of futuristic titles…) who worked on the project, explains: “As human systems becomes more and more complex, we think there’ll be more work for individuals whose job it is to make them more navigable for people.”
It’s not as glamorous as it may seem
While healthcare is definitely booming, job opportunities aren’t evenly distributed across the industry. Some trained medical professionals are finding it tough to break into their fields. This 2014 Financial Post article highlights the importance of researching your job prospects before embarking on an expensive training program.
Similarly, it’s also worth looking into the reality of your chosen profession at a personal level. Do some research. What is it really like to work in the field? Start by talking to people who are already in the trenches, so to speak – you might be surprised by the unglamorous reality of a chosen profession. Make sure what you’re aiming for fits the kind of work you actually want to be doing, and adjust your path accordingly.
Healthcare may be your chance to explore the country
While some healthcare professions have an oversupply of skilled applicants, the market can vary widely by province and region. While some markets are over-saturated and jobs are scarce, other regions need skilled workers, and are offering perks to make it worth your while. Saskatchewan, for example, offers some great incentive programs, including interest relief on student loans, moving allowances, and extra bonuses for people working in specific rural communities. It might just be both the land of living skies and career opportunities.
Wherever you end up – whether it’s a geographic move or a job change (or both!) – a career in healthcare can change not just your own life, but also give you the chance to have a positive impact on countless others. If you can see yourself working in healthcare, here are all of our current openings.