What does it take to
break into health care?
While many sectors of the economy are shrinking, health care is
growing. And the industry is expected to expand dramatically during
the next 20 years as boomers age and increase demand.
The health care industry is on track to open 3 million new jobs in the
period from 2006 to 2016—a 22-percent increase.
Bottom line: It’s a good time to explore a health care
“You have a lot to think about, because there are so many types
of health care jobs,” says Debra Stock, vice president of member
relations at the American Hospital Association.
Positions are open for nurses, physician assistants, audiologists,
physical trainers, and dieticians, to name a few. Health care also
offers various settings: hospitals, nursing homes, schools, sports
organizations, pharmacies, and other environments.
Workers over 50 “are reliable, committed, loyal, and methodical, which
is especially important in health care, because it results in fewer errors.”
dARLENE STONE vice president of human resources, Central Florida Health Alliance
Annual income (in 2008) Dollars in thousands
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008
U.S. Bureau of Labor Wage Estimates
Stock suggests starting your search with the
American Medical Association’s Health
Care Careers Directory.
The publication—online at
explores 81 careers, their job
responsibilities, salary averages,
and educational requirements.
After you have a sense of what you’d
like to do:
Talk to others in the field. If you don’t know
anyone personally, ask around or contact professional
associations that may put you in touch with members. Another
option: Post questions to online message boards related to your
profession of interest.
Determine your commitment level. A career in the health