Top Healthcare Careers

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Top Healthcare Careers

Dentist
Ranking 1

Median Salary $145,240 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Doctorate
Exploring the Dream Dentists diagnose and treat problems with a patientís teeth, gums, and related parts of the mouth. They provide advice and instruction on taking care of teeth and gums and on diet choices that affect oral health.
Living the Dream Some dentists own their own businesses and work alone or with a small staff.
Reaching the Dream Dentists must be licensed in all states; requirements vary by state. To qualify for a license in most states, applicants must graduate from an accredited dental school and pass written and practical exams.

Nurse Practitioner
Ranking 2

Median Salary $89,860 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Masters
Exploring the Dream practice medicine on a team under the supervision of physicians and surgeons. They are formally educated to examine patients, diagnose injuries and illnesses, and provide treatment.
Living the Dream work in physiciansí offices, hospitals, and other healthcare settings. Most work full time.
Reaching the Dream These programs usually lead to a masterís degree. All states require physician assistants to be licensed.

Pharmacist
Ranking 3

Median Salary $116,670 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Doctorate
Exploring the Dream Pharmacists dispense prescription medications to patients and offer expertise in the safe use of prescriptions. They also may provide advice on how to lead a healthy lifestyle, conduct health and wellness screenings, provide immunizations, and oversee the medications given to patients.
Living the Dream Pharmacists work in pharmacies, including those in grocery and drug stores. They also work in hospitals and clinics.
Reaching the Dream Pharmacists must have a Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm.D.), a 4-year professional degree. They also must be licensed, which requires passing two exams.

Registered Nurse
Ranking 4

Median Salary $65,470 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements College
Exploring the Dream Registered nurses (RNs) provide and coordinate patient care, educate patients and the public about various health conditions, and provide advice and emotional support to patients and their family members.
Living the Dream Registered nurses work in hospitals, physicians' offices, home healthcare services, and nursing care facilities. Others work in correctional facilities, schools, or serve in the military.
Reaching the Dream Registered nurses usually take one of three education paths: a bachelor's degree in nursing, an associateís degree in nursing, or a diploma from an approved nursing program. Registered nurses must also be licensed.

Physical Therapist
Ranking 5

Median Salary $79,860 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Doctorate
Exploring the Dream Physical therapists, sometimes called PTs, help injured or ill people improve their movement and manage their pain. These therapists are often an important part of rehabilitation and treatment of patients with chronic conditions or injuries.
Living the Dream Physical therapists typically work in private offices and clinics, hospitals, and nursing homes. They spend much of their time on their feet, actively working with patients.
Reaching the Dream Physical therapists entering the profession need a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree. All states require physical therapists to be licensed.

Physician
Ranking 6

Median Salary $180,870 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Doctorate
Exploring the Dream Physicians and surgeons diagnose and treat injuries or illnesses. Physicians examine patients; take medical histories; prescribe medications; and order, perform, and interpret diagnostic tests. They counsel patients on diet, hygiene, and preventive healthcare. Surgeons operate on patients to treat injuries, such as broken bones; diseases, such as cancerous tumors; and deformities, such as cleft palates.
Living the Dream Physicians and surgeons held about 691,400 jobs in 2012. Many physicians work in private offices or clinics, often with administrative and healthcare personnel.
Reaching the Dream Physicians and surgeons have demanding education and training requirements. Almost all physicians complete at least 4 years of undergraduate school, 4 years of medical school, and, depending on their specialty, 3 to 8 years in internship and residency pro

Dental Hygienist
Ranking 7

Median Salary $70,210 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Associates
Exploring the Dream Dental hygienists clean teeth, examine patients for signs of oral diseases such as gingivitis, and provide other preventative dental care. They also educate patients on ways to improve and maintain good oral health.
Living the Dream Almost all dental hygienists work in dentistsí offices, which are clean and well lit. More than half of dental hygienists work part time.
Reaching the Dream Dental hygienists typically need an associateís degree in dental hygiene. All states require dental hygienists to be licensed; requirements vary by state.

Physician Assistant
Ranking 8

Median Salary $90,930 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Masters
Exploring the Dream Physician assistants, also known as PAs, practice medicine on a team under the supervision of physicians and surgeons. They are formally educated to examine patients, diagnose injuries and illnesses, and provide treatment.
Living the Dream Physician assistants work in physiciansí offices, hospitals, and other healthcare settings. Most work full time.
Reaching the Dream Physician assistants must complete an accredited educational program. These programs usually lead to a masterís degree. All states require physician assistants to be licensed.

Occupational Therapist
Ranking 9

Median Salary $75,000 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Masters
Exploring the Dream Occupational therapists treat injured, ill, or disabled patients through the therapeutic use of everyday activities. They help these patients develop, recover, and improve the skills needed for daily living and working.
Living the Dream About half of occupational therapists work in offices of occupational therapy or in hospitals. Others work in schools, nursing homes, physiciansí offices, and home health services. Therapists spend a lot of time on their feet while working with patients.
Reaching the Dream Occupational therapists typically have a masterís degree in occupational therapy. All states require occupational therapists to be licensed or registered.

Phlebotomist
Ranking 10

Median Salary $29,730 (Do Not Chase the Dollar - Chase Your Passion)
Educational Requirements Certification
Exploring the Dream Phlebotomists draw blood for tests, transfusions, research, or blood donations. Some explain their work to patients and provide assistance when patients have adverse reactions after their blood is drawn.
Living the Dream Phlebotomists work mainly in hospitals, medical and diagnostic laboratories, blood donor centers, and doctorís offices.
Reaching the Dream Phlebotomists typically enter the occupation with a postsecondary nondegree award from a phlebotomy program. Almost all employers look for phlebotomists who have earned professional certification.

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