When you think “health care,” you may automatically think of doctors and nurses. This mental image makes sense as these are the professionals who are often at the forefront of providing patient care, but did you know there are many other careers that fall under the health care umbrella? The odds are high that you’ll find the perfect health care career if you keep your passions and interests in mind as you explore your options.
Create safe work environments as an occupational health and safety expert
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) promotes workplace safety by enforcing rules around how organizations conduct business. As an occupational health and safety expert, you could work for a variety of workplaces, including government agencies like OSHA, factories and other companies that employ people who work in risky or potentially risky environments. By learning about their jobs and the risks involved, you can determine a plan to increase safety conditions, educate workers and inspect these work sites.
There are a variety of ways to land a job as an occupational health and safety expert, but one thing is sure, it involves a lot of math and science. Degree programs like biology, environmental engineering and physics are all good bets. This is also an area where an internship or job shadowing would be an excellent idea!
Create a vision for better health care as a medical animator
Those that want to combine health care and art should consider becoming a medical illustrator/animator. Medical illustrators need a deep understanding of medicine, science, communication and the software that they use to animate or illustrate. Creativity is important when solving challenges, and some of these artists specialize in a particular field. Some create models for training and teaching. Some create applications or simulation games for educational purposes.
Heal with your hands as a massage therapist
Massage therapists provide a highly effected form of alternative medical therapy. Here are some of the top reasons to consider this rewarding career:
- You can immediately head to work after graduation as a licensed professional.
- You can work anywhere – even on cruise ships and tropical resorts.
- You can be your own boss, set your own hours and create your own work environment.
- You can stay physically active while at work.
Massage therapy has a very long history of healing, as it began in ancient China about 2700 B.C. Therapeutic massage is found almost everywhere you’d find a doctor, in hospitals, private clinics and long-term care facilities and is performed on all ages.
Take personal training to the next level with kinesiology
While personal trainers are often solicited for their assistance in improving athletic prowess, kinesiotherapists create individualized programs to help patients bounce back from an injury or illness. With their in-depth knowledge of the human body, they are able to determine which exercises work best for each goal without putting other areas at risk. As a kinesiotherapist, you’ll be able to work with a variety of age groups, or select a specialty.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is one place where you will find kinesiotherapists in action. Here, you’ll see patients of all ages. Most of the patients in the VA system have service-related injuries, stemming from traumatic accidents. Some were from deployments or training accidents, and others are from everyday events, like car accidents. Here’s an interesting fact for you: a physical therapist started this program in the VA in 1957, helping to assimilate WWII veterans back in to the community. While these two health care providers work together, they have two very different jobs.
Keep your eyes open next time you venture out into offices, hospitals or government buildings. You may be surprised to find health care practitioners — and inspiration to help you choose a health care career — in places you wouldn’t expect!