The healthcare system is akin to a humongous machine with a ton of moving parts and intricacies.
While on the surface it may look deceptively simple with doctors, nurses, and hospital staff on the frontlines, the reality is that there are many other medical careers, which are important but may tend to fly under the radar. These elements make up the backbone of modern healthcare, and their absence could cripple it.
If you’re considering a career in the medical domain, you should be aware of all your options. The MBBS vs BDS vs BAMS vs BHMS discussion dominates most healthcare career choices, but what if you want a different experience? Here are a few unconventional careers in healthcare that will surprise you.
Unconventional Careers in Healthcare
1. Hospital Administrator
Administrative hospital careers are some of the most challenging jobs in healthcare. The onus of directing the gargantuan beast that is modern medicine lies squarely on your shoulders. The day-to-day running of a hospital or a medical college involves having a lot of plates spinning; with unpredictable complications, dozens of disgruntled people, and an overburdened healthcare system in the mix.
A career as a hospital administrator will perhaps not attract the limelight in a way that core medical vocations do, but it is a role that is indispensable to the functioning of any healthcare setting. If you have the ability to remain calm under constant duress, orchestrate multiple events, resolve mishaps, and do not mind relatively decreased interaction with patients, you might want to look into Hospital Administration as a vocation.
A healthcare career that has been steadily building up a head of steam in India, Pharmacy has moved beyond its one-time perception of being solely related to the sale of drugs. A career in pharmacy brings with it the opportunity to serve multiple roles that are linked to better patient outcomes and new research.
In an advisory capacity at hospitals, pharmacists can opine on the selection of medicines and their side effects and maintain hospital stocks of medicines in addition to dispensing drugs. Their role in the pharmaceutical industry involves the research and development of new drugs, overseeing clinical trials, and ensuring quality control. Pharmacists may also don the educator’s hat at medical colleges, teaching students about the various aspects of Pharmacology.
With job opportunities available across the globe, a career in Pharmacy is a phenomenal way to spread your wings in healthcare and impact lives positively.
Genetics is a rabbit-hole of data in biology, enabling researchers to unravel more and more about the building blocks that make us who we are. From understanding health disorders, predicting future disease occurrences, understanding individual responses to medication, to even treating cancer, it is safe to say that mapping the human genome has been a boon to humankind. Geneticists, as the name suggests, study genes to better understand the traits that pass down from parent to child with a view to elucidating and possibly treating diseases.
The burgeoning popularity of gene therapy, the focus on genetics as an area of interest for research, and the improved public understanding of how much of our health is governed by our genes have made genetics a great option for those seeking an unconventional career in healthcare. If analytical skills, perseverance, and critical thinking are traits you prize in yourself, you might want to consider a career as a geneticist.
4. Speech Pathologist/Therapist
Speech therapists are some of the most sought-after professionals worldwide, helping children and adults who have speech impairments. Whether it is an inability to speak, difficulties in articulation, or stuttering, speech therapists help to assess the condition and formulate strategies for dealing with it. Their expertise even extends to stroke survivors, Alzheimer’s disease, Bell’s palsy, autism, and the speech disabilities associated with them.
Speech therapists, or speech pathologists as they are also known, address swallowing challenges faced by these patients as well. This includes evaluating why an individual is unable to swallow, and offering a range of solutions such as dietary modification and periodic screening.
If you have the traits of a great communicator, a lot of patience and compassion, and a deep interest in interacting with people with a view to helping them improve, you might want to take a look at a career as a speech pathologist.
5. Occupational Therapist
Occupational therapy is aimed at individuals of all ages who have some form of dysfunction that prevents them from accomplishing the activities that they are expected to. An occupational therapist works with such individuals to create and carry out strategies that can help them overcome this dysfunction. They help such individuals develop a holistic routine that accommodates their disabilities.
For instance, a child with cerebral palsy will have difficulties with movement and co-ordination which make dressing up oneself a cumbersome task. An occupational therapist could possibly recommend optimizations to the child’s dressing, such as velcro straps and elastic laces, that will help them navigate this process in an easier manner. They would then assist them in practising these routines and help configure other aspects of their environment to boost their comfort and ease. In addition to this, they would also develop plans of action with the child’s parents to account for the challenges in other day-to-day routines.
A career as an occupational therapist can be challenging and fulfilling in equal measure, with a pronounced focus on imagination, empathy, and kindness.
The sheer scale of modern medicine makes it a phenomenal platform for multiple careers to thrive. If you are set on the noble vocation of being at the service of humankind, you have various options to choose from. Each of these careers is demanding, requiring you to rise to the occasion and make a ton of sacrifices. Each of them is also worth it, for the fulfilment of knowing that your actions helped alleviate someone’s discomfort.
For more information on creating a roadmap for these careers, reach out to our experts for career counselling online.