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Do you need to go to medical school for a career in healthcare?

Written by Heidi Song November 21th 2021

Clearly, with over 22 million workers in the healthcare industry, the field of health care is desirable to work in for many. Not only can working in this field provide great job prospects and satisfaction to individuals but it is also an industry that offers a wide variety of jobs that require different levels of experience and qualifications. However, with the job market only getting increasingly competitive and more employers are looking for candidates with higher levels of experience and education, what are the medical careers that don’t actually require going to school for an extensive number of years?

To begin with, as many may or may not know, it is not always necessary to attend medical school to be a medical professional. For instance, individuals do not need to attend medical school to be certified pharmacists, physician assistants (PA), dietitians, and more. More specifically, students can attend a 4 year Pharm. D. program to become a pharmacist. To become a PA, individuals need to complete a four-year degree followed by a 25-month accredited PA program and a one-year clinical rotation. Becoming a dietitian involves attending an accredited 4-year bachelor’s degree program in dietetic education, being in a dietetic internship program, being registered to practice and writing the Canadian Dietitian Registration Exam for students in Canada. Although there are many pathways individuals can take to ultimately get the following careers, the mentioned pathways are all potential ways of taking on these roles without really having to study for many more years.

It is also important to note that there are many jobs required in the medical field that are not all directly related to practicing medicine. For instance, there is a need for biomedical engineers, computer scientists, and many other roles. Within the medical field, biomedical engineers study, design, develop and evaluate biological and medical systems and products, such as artificial organs, prostheses, medical instruments and information systems. Programming jobs within the medical field fall between the two categories of research and software engineering. Computer science researchers usually work in hospitals and universities and typically work on cutting-edge technology. Programmers write software within the medical industry for medical equipment and for hospital administration. Ultimately, it is clear that students should not be discouraged to work in healthcare as there are many jobs needed in this industry besides roles solely focusing on practicing medicine.


Works Cited

“21 Medical Jobs You Can Do Without Attending Medical School.” Indeed Editorial Team. Web. 3 March. 2021.

“6 reasons to consider becoming a physician assistant, one of the country’s most in-demand jobs.” CareerBuilder. Web. 19 August. 2020.

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