High Demand Healthcare Careers and Salaries

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August 7th, 2008

The healthcare industry is one of the largest and fastest growing fields in today’s job market.  Even in hard economic times, the healthcare field continues to be in high demand and always in need of professionals.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in healthcare are expected to see a 22% increase by 2018, bringing in over 3 million new jobs.  Many jobs in the healthcare field require different degrees and training, making it a possible field to work in for many different levels of people.

Registered nurses, also known as RNs, are considered one of the top and most in-demand careers in healthcare.  Registered nurses alone, are to bring more than 580,000 new jobs to the healthcare field in the next several years.  Registered nurses generally care for patients, can work in a number of different specializations, and earned a median annual salary of $62,450 in 2008.

Nurse aides help care for ill patients with a number of tasks involving bathing and feeding patients.  Nurse aide positions are expected to grow by 19%, bringing an estimated 276,000 positions by 2018.  Nurse aides earned median hourly wages of $11.46 in 2008, with the middle 50 percent earning between $9.71 and $13.76 an hour.

Physical therapists, also known as PTs, help people of all ages that have conditions or illnesses that limit their movement, to function in their everyday lives.  PT positions are expected to grow 30%, bringing over 56,000 jobs by 2018, which is much faster than the average career.  PTs earned an annual median salary of $72,790 in 2008.

Occupational therapists help patients with their ability to perform tasks in their living and working environments.  Job growth in occupational therapists is expected to increase by 26% in the coming years, much faster than the average.  Occupational therapists earned a median annual salary of $66,780 in 2008.

Medical secretaries and assistants are among high demand positions in the healthcare field.  Medial secretaries and assistants perform daily administrative tasks to ensure the efficient running of the office.  They are expected to grow much faster than average, with an estimated 164,000 new jobs by 2018.  Medical secretaries earned an annual median salary of $28,300 in 2008.

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