One industry that will probably never have to worry about job security is the healthcare industry. It’s pretty safe to say that we’re always going to need doctors and nurses, and the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly shown us that.
In addition to the constant need for healthcare workers, some areas of the world have also been experiencing a shortage of physicians and nurses— furthering the need for more healthcare professionals. Here are some of the most in-demand careers in the medical field.
#1: Critical Care Medicine
Critical care medicine is a specialty that focuses on the treatment of a wide range of extreme illnesses that affect humans. The majority of critical care physicians (also known as intensivists) work in the intensive care units (ICU) of hospitals. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has placed a lot of patients in ICU, triggering the need for more intensivists. If you’re a physician who specializes in critical care (or are on the path to becoming one), you’re considered to be in high demand.
#2: Hospital Medicine
Physicians who specialize in hospital care are known as hospitalists, and like intensivists, they are in high demand. There are people who are in need of specialized care while they’re in the hospital (whether it’s due to COVID or not), and hospitalists are the doctors whose sole focus is to provide care for these patients.
This is a relatively new physician position, as many hospital doctors are also internal medicine doctors. However, internal medicine doctors (internists) don’t always work as hospitalists or nocturnists (hospitalists who work overnight shifts), and hospitalists don’t have to be trained internists. Still, the presence of hospitalists has significantly decreased the number of hospital readmissions.
#3: Internal Medicine
Internal medicine doctors are known as internists, and they specialize in diagnosing, treating, and preventing diseases and illnesses that affect adults. These are your typical doctors, such as your primary care physicians (PCPs), family medicine doctors, and even pediatricians for children. Internists are either general internists, or they can specialize in a particular area, such as:
- Infectious disease
PCPs and family medicine doctors are just as important and as equally needed as are our critical care physicians and hospitalists. They play a major role in helping adults (and children and adolescents) prevent a wide variety of illnesses.
There are several different types of nurses, but two of the most needed types are registered nurses (RNs) and nurse practitioners (NPs). These two roles sound very similar, and there are a lot of similarities between the two. There are also many differences, but both nursing career paths are currently in high demand.
RNs work under a physician, administering medications, observing and assessing patients, collecting samples, and supervising licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and nursing assistants. On the other hand, NPs are allowed to perform many more tasks, such as diagnosing and treating patients, without the supervision of a physician.
#5: Occupational and Physical Therapy
Physical therapy (PT) is for those coping with pain, wanting to increase their range of motion, and trying to regain gross motor skills. Occupational therapy (OT), on the other hand, is physical therapy for those having trouble performing daily activities due to developmental, mental, or physical disorders or ailments.
Both of these occupations are in high demand, as well as physical therapy assistants (PTAs) and occupational therapy assistants (OTAs). OTs and OTAs, specifically, are in high demand due to the higher incidence of children being diagnosed with developmental disabilities and delays, and an increasingly aging population. Also, if you are interested, here you may check jobs for physical therapy reviewer.
Psychiatrists, not to be confused with psychologists or psychotherapists, are doctors who treat mental health disorders. What makes them different from therapists is that they are medical professionals who are qualified to diagnose and prescribe medication for mental health conditions.
With so many more people (of all ages) starting to take better care of their mental health in addition to their physical health, there’s an increase in the need for both psychiatrists and psychotherapists.
Telemedicine uses phone calls, text messaging, emails, and video calls to allow physicians and patients to interact with each other without the need for an in-person visit. This method has existed long before the COVID-19 pandemic, but the need for physicians to work in telemedicine has greatly increased because of it. With that being said, it’s possible to find this specific physician occupation almost anywhere.
The best part about telemedicine is that the majority of the other physician professionals listed before it can branch out into this field of work.