The Growing Demand for Healthcare Professionals

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Image courtesy of flickr

In addition to the increasing number of jobs in the construction sector, today’s economy is also experiencing a tremendous growth in the healthcare industry.

Last year, the Huffington Post predicted that this sector would be able to provide more job opportunities, amounting to 5.6 million before 2020.

[Editors note: Recent UK labour market statistics show human health and social work sectors producing increasing numbers of job opportunities. There were 117,000 more workforce jobs in June 2012-13, compared with the previous year.]

In August, Modern Healthcare honoured 40 healthcare companies that shown a positive outlook in increasing job placements for temporary and permanent positions.

There’s a catch

Citing a Forbes report, how2become founder Richard McMunn said that there’s a catch in the “booming” number of job opportunities. While the demand continues to increase, there is also a need for a stronger skill set, compelling employers to search for candidates with an exemplary educational background and experience.

From the recorded 81% in 2010, the demand for training and post-secondary education in the industry is expected to rise up to 82% in 2020. The same also applies for professional and technical occupations where it’s predicted to reach a 94% increase in six years.

Filling the skills gap

Nowadays, the most successful health practitioners exhibit the essential transferable skills. These skills make physical and occupational therapists highly desirable, especially in far-flung areas that are deprived of proper medical attention. According to Net Places, this level of excellence is the fundamental factor in a successful community program. Here are some of the most common transferable skills:

  • Manual Dexterity

    Medical professional with skills in manual dexterity have the ability to move their hands with coordination. This skill comes in handy during pressing conditions, especially when performing vital operations. This skill is best depicted by dentists, wherein their motor control works in unison with their hand-eye coordination.
  • Communication Skills

    Aside from their patients, clinicians must be able to communicate clearly with their colleagues, managers, and patient’s family. A strong communication skill also comes with the ability to provide an accurate and concise medical documentation, detailing a patient’s status
  • Leadership

    Healthcare is a profession that relies mainly on teamwork. Leadership skills must not only be exhibited by the team supervisor, but by every member of the team. This skill is best exemplified in the operating table, where each member’s effort is vital to the success of the whole team.

The most in-demand jobs

Forbes has released its annual list of the most in-demand career specialties in the health sector in August. For the 7th year in the row, family doctors have topped the list, due to their less expensive medical assistance in outpatient settings. This is in strict accordance with the Affordable Care Act, which aims to give quality service despite the lower cost of medicines and consultation.

Debuting the list are the nurse practitioners, with the ability to prescribe medications and run small clinics. This coincides to the  2012 Georgetown’s Center On Education And The Workforce report that revealed nursing occupation is primed to grow the fastest. Local hospitals are also now demanding nurses holding a bachelor’s degree, or at least an associate-level education.

Potential problems

Like any other expanding industry, the healthcare sector is also confronted with dilemmas, especially on the part of legislators, care providers, and CEOs. Fortunately, Open Forum notes that these problems, whether huge or small, are solvable.

  • Time and money

    The sector is in need of more investors, who will provide the financial assistance, to replace old medical apparatuses that are highly needed in rural areas. Fortunately, the industry is swamped with initiatives to change the delivery of health care. A good example is the WellnessMart, a one-stop shop where patients can get travel vaccines and doctor consultations.
  • Shortage of doctors

    The lack of family doctors and paediatricians boils down to the issue of salary. With a salary of $138,000, [ roughly £85,000] family doctors are pursuing specialization for higher pay – general surgeons ($225,000) and orthopedic surgeons ($315,000).

With the phenomenal growth in the medical industry, job seekers are able to find their niche, where their wide skill set and multiple degrees are called for.

What do you think of this sudden boom in the healthcare industry?


About the Author

 Zoe Allen is a graduating college student with a degree in Health Sciences. She plans on venturing the healthcare industry to maximize the skills and knowledge she earned in the university. In preparation, she reads Richard McMunn’s How2become a Paramedic: The Insider’s Guide. Zoe would love to hear your thoughts, so follow her on Twitter.

Zoe Allen 08:13

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