The Highest Paid Non-Physician Jobs in Healthcare

By  //  July 7, 2022

The healthcare industry is wide and versatile, requiring many different professionals with their own areas of specialization to work together to ensure the field runs and patients are taken care of effectively. 

However, despite what many may think, working in healthcare does not need to involve a dedication to studying and lots of student debt. There are plenty of jobs in the healthcare industry that do not require a doctorate but are still hugely important roles that can be emotionally and financially rewarding.

With this in mind, if you are considering working in the healthcare profession, this guide is here to help you learn all you need to know to find the right job in the healthcare sector that doesn’t necessarily require you to become a physician!

A Pharmacist

Pharmacists play a vital role within the healthcare profession as they are responsible for ensuring the health and wellness of the general population by dispensing the right medications. The pharmacist’s role is to oversee the whole medication dispensing process, from taking care of the medicines to advising patients. Not only is a pharmacist responsible for giving advice on medication schedules but also checking how much medication and what prescriptions a patient is given to ensure overall health.

In order to work as a pharmacist, you will need to have a doctoral or professional degree. You will also need to have obtained a pharmacist’s license, which is granted after passing two exams.

A Nurse Practitioner 

Nurses play a vital role in the healthcare industry and can work as primary and specialty care providers. Nurses often work both independently and in collaboration with physicians or surgeons. A nurse practitioner can be responsible for assessing and treating a patient’s health issues.

Also, many nurse practitioners choose to specialize in a specific field within the healthcare industry. There are many different options that you could take when you are looking for a more specialized healthcare profession; for example, you could become a nurse anesthetist, nurse-midwife, or pediatric nurse. 

When you are looking to specialize in a certain area, you will need to gain the necessary qualifications. For instance, if your goal is to work in the field of adult and gerontology primary care, you will want to consider taking an online AGPCNP MSN program.

A Physician Assistant 

Otherwise known simply as ‘PAs,’ a physician assistant works to assist physicians and surgeons in examining, diagnosing, and treating patients. The role of a physician assistant can change every day; you might be asked to review a patient’s medical history, examine patients, diagnose an injury or illness, prescribe medication, provide treatment, interpret diagnostic data, or counsel ill or concerned individuals. 

Depending on which state you are operating in, your responsibilities as a physician assistant can vary. While in some states, physician assistants take on a more supportive role to the physician or surgeon, they may act as the primary caregiver in other regions.

In order to start working as a physician assistant, you will need to have obtained a relevant master’s degree from an accredited program. You will also need to have the appropriate licensing and have passed the Physician Assistant National Certifying Examination to obtain the necessary license to practice. It is also required for you to have received an agreement with your supervising physician in order to practice as a physician assistant.

A Medical and Health Services Manager 

If you like the idea of working in the healthcare field but find yourself more business orientated, then the medical and health services manager role might be better for you. Medical and health services managers – or healthcare administrators, healthcare executives, or managers as they are commonly called – are responsible for coordinating, managing, and directing medical services. 

A medical and health services manager might work in many different settings; for example, they might be responsible for managing an entire hospital or one specific department. Plus, these highly organized, senior administrative professionals might not necessarily have a degree in the healthcare field. Sometimes, they have other qualifications, experience, and transferrable skills in completely different areas, with many even switching to healthcare after having had a career in an entirely different sector before.

Furthermore, the level of education necessary for this role is not as set as in other professions outlined. While some medical and health services managers hold master’s degrees, others have doctoral degrees or even bachelor’s degrees.

A Physical Therapist 

Physical therapists play a critical role in the recovery and overall health and rehabilitation of individuals who have had surgery or suffered an illness or injury. A physical therapist, or a ‘PT,’ is responsible for helping patients recover and improve their range of motion or pain that is caused by an illness or an injury. A PT will be responsible for creating a tailored treatment plan and working with an individual to enable them to reach their full health potential.

The field of physical therapy is one of the fastest-growing healthcare professions, making it a very viable choice for those looking to enter the healthcare industry. If you are looking to start working as a physical therapist, you should begin by obtaining the necessary professional degree and license to practice.

An Occupational Therapist 

Occupational therapists help their patients recover or improve their quality of life and develop the skills they need for their everyday routine and in their jobs. An occupational therapist, otherwise known as an ‘OT,’ is a professional with extensive training in treating injured, sick, or disabled patients. An occupational therapist might work in a hospital, clinic, school, nursing home, or home health. 

In order to work as an occupational therapist, you will need to have both an undergraduate and a graduate degree and pass the required license exams.

A Genetic Counsellor 

A genetic counselor is a type of healthcare professional that has a specialization in genetics and counseling. A genetic counselor is responsible for providing risk assessments, education, and support for patients looking for information about their risks of inheriting or developing certain diseases. 

A genetic counselor will also be responsible for interpreting genetic tests and advocating for their patients. A genetic counselor can work in a number of different settings, such as a medical center, a hospital, or a diagnostic laboratory.

In order to start working as a genetic counselor, you will need to obtain a degree from an accredited master’s program in genetic counseling. Once you have received your master’s degree, you will then be able to take the state’s certification exam, which, when passed, enables you to begin working as a certified genetic counselor.

A Speech-Language Pathologist 

A speech-language pathologist, sometimes simply called a ‘speech therapist,’ is focused on working to assess, diagnose, and treat communication and swallowing disorders in both children and adults. A speech-language pathologist will work with patients that have suffered from strokes, brain injuries, autism, or developmental delays. It is also quite common for a speech-language pathologist to work in a school or a healthcare facility, such as a hospital.

A speech-language pathologist will need to earn a bachelor’s degree in a related field and then get a master’s of science in speech-language pathology. Once they have completed their education, they will then need to pass the examination in speech-language pathology in order to be able to practice.

A Dental Hygienist 

A dental hygienist is another very important role within the healthcare industry. A dental hygienist is responsible for cleaning the patients’ teeth and checking for signs of oral disease and possible decay. They also provide preventative dental care measures and other necessary practices, such as performing x-rays and fluoride treatments. Dental hygienists also play an important role in education practices concerning how people can improve and maintain good oral health.

The majority of dental hygienists hold a minimum of an associate’s degree in dental hygiene. It is also a requirement to obtain the necessary state license to practice as a dental hygienist.

A Chiropractor 

Chiropractors are responsible for treating practices mainly through the practice of spinal adjustments and manipulations. Chiropractors are responsible for helping alleviate health problems that are related to the neuromusculoskeletal systems. It is common for chiropractors to work intendedly in dedicated chiropractic practice.

The work of a chiropractor can be significant in the healthcare field, as they are responsible for readjusting the spine. These potential consequences related to the chiropractor are huge, which is why all working chiropractors need to have attended chiropractic school, earned a doctor of chiropractic degree, and passed a series of exams administered by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners and secure a state license.

A Dietitian 

A dietitian is an expert in the areas of food and nutrition and use their knowledge to help their patients maintain a healthy diet and aid recovery and treatment of an illness or injury through diet and lifestyle. While detains can work with any individual who would benefit from their service, they are particularly influential in treating patients suffering from eating disorders, obesity, and diabetes.

In order to work as a dietitian in the United States, you will need to have obtained a bachelor’s degree and a certification statement from an ACEND accredited program.