If you’ve ever been treated for a health ailment, chances are you’ve chanced upon or have been examined by someone who isn’t a physician but whose job is just as essential in taking care of patients. Unsurprisingly, not everyone working in healthcare is a doctor or a nurse. Many other professions won’t require you to come out of medical school, train, or study for years.
Those people work alongside physicians as they help patients with their medical concerns, which means their role in taking care of you is just as important as the physicians’.
If you feel like you want to join the medical field, you don’t have to feel pressured to get a medical degree. There are plenty of career options for non-physicians in the field. Take a look at this list of jobs in healthcare that won’t require you to be a physician with a medical degree, license, and many others:
1. Respiratory Therapist
Respiratory therapists can treat a wide range of breathing problems such as chronic respiratory diseases in emphysema and asthma. They can accommodate patients whose conditions vary from ones with underdeveloped lungs to elderly individuals with lung disease.
To become a respiratory therapist, you’d need to earn an associate’s degree and become a licensed respiratory therapist in the state where you’ll practice.
2. Nutritionist and Dietitians
They are professionals in healthcare whose expertise focuses on the area of nutrition and food. Their knowledge is used to promote and encourage a healthy diet to help manage diseases. Both dietitians and nutritionists are valuable when it comes to treating diabetes and obesity.
To become a dietitian or a nutritionist, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree. If you have educational attainment lower than the requirement, there are other options, such as earning a health coach training certification.
3. MRI and Radiologic Technology
A popular non-physician job in healthcare is MRI and radiologic technology. These professionals are also known as radiographers, and they perform imaging services in hospital settings.
On the other hand, MRI technologists receive training to provide patients with MRI scans to assist physicians with diagnosis. Typically, an associate’s degree is required along with licenses and certifications, based on state regulations.
4. Orthotic and Prosthetics Professional
Orthotic and prosthetics professionals measure, fit, fabricate, and design orthotic and prosthetic devices for people of all ages. They work to create and tailor artificial braces, limbs, and other medical or surgical prosthetics devices needed by patients. They can work in manufacturing and hospital settings.
One of the most highly educated non-physician professionals in healthcare is chiropractors. They use spinal adjustments and manipulation to treat patients with problems in their neuromusculoskeletal systems.
Most chiropractors can practice independently, but some chose to work with other chiropractors in private practice. They’re regarded as highly educated non-physicians because having a Doctor of Chiropractic degree is a requirement to practice.
6. Registered Nurse
You’re more likely than not familiar with registered nurses. They’re highly skilled professionals who are focused on caring for patients. Due to the high demand for their skills, there are already different ways to become a registered nurse.
They coordinate and provide patient care, advice, and support to the patient and their families. They work in most, if not all, health care settings. The typical requirement to become a registered nurse is to earn a bachelor’s degree and a nursing license by examining.
7. Dental Hygienist
A dental office can’t function without a skilled dental hygienist. They’re responsible for cleaning, checking for diseases, and assisting dentists while they see patients. Dental hygienists can also provide preventive dental care treatment such as x-rays and fluoride treatments.
Besides working alongside dentists, they’re also in charge of educating patients on practicing proper oral care. It would require a person to have an associate’s degree and a license to become a dental hygienist.
8. Speech-Language Pathologist
Also called speech therapists, speech-language pathologists work to assess, diagnose, and treat swallowing and communication disorders. Their usual patients are children. They also treat adults who struggle with swallowing, language, and speech due to:
- Developmental delay
- Brain injury
Most of them work in school settings, and the others work in healthcare facilities such as hospitals and private practices. The minimum educational requirement to become a speech therapist is a master’s degree.
Now that you have a few non-physician career options in healthcare, it’s time to choose which field you want to join. If this is something you’re passionate about, we’re sure picking the right job won’t be hard.