Top 10 Medical Professions in 2014

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Written by Pooja Thakkar     Below is the list of the top 10 jobs deemed to be the best in health care by...

Written by Pooja Thakkar



Below is the list of the top 10 jobs deemed to be the best in health care by CareerCast, a five-year-old job search website in Carlsbad, California.

In addition to income, the ranking is based on data that weighted stress, physical demands, and both the current and future hiring outlook across varied healthcare occupations from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

1. Biomedical engineer

Biomedical engineers analyze and design solutions to problems in biology and medicine, with the goal of improving the quality of patient care. They usually work full time in manufacturing, universities, hospitals, research facilities, educational and medical institutions as well as government regulatory agencies.

Entry-Level Education: Bachelor’s degree

Annual median salary: $86,960

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 62%


2. Dental hygienist

As Dr. Seuss once wrote, “Teeth are always in style.” Hygienists work with dentists to diagnose and treat our teeth and gums, as well as provide counseling on how to maintain good oral health. Almost all dental hygienists work in dentists’ offices. More than half of dental hygienists work part time.

Entry-Level Education:Associate’s degree

Annual median salary:$79,000

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 38%


3. Occupational therapist

Occupational therapists (OTs) work with patients to help them recover after an illness, disease or an accident. They are specifically trained to assist patients in developing and recovering the skills needed for daily living and working. They may work with patients on things like showering, operating a computer, transferring to bed or improving memory.

About half of OTs work in offices of occupational therapy or in hospitals. Others work in schools, nursing homes, physicians’ offices, and home health services.

Entry-Level Education:  Master’s degree

Annual median salary: $75,400

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 33%


4. Optometrist

Optometrists diagnose visual disorders and prescribe corrective and rehabilitative treatments. Most optometrists work full time in stand-alone offices of optometry. A small number of optometrists work in doctors’ offices, retail stores, outpatient clinics, and hospitals.

Entry-Level Education:Doctoral or professional degree

Annual median salary:$97,820

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 33%


5. Physical therapist

Physical therapists, sometimes called PTs, provide treatment to improve mobility and alleviate pain in persons disabled by injury or chronic conditions. PTs typically work in private offices and clinics, hospitals, home health agencies, schools, sports and fitness facilities, and nursing homes.

Entry-Level Education:Doctoral or professional degree

Annual median salary: $79,860

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 39%


6. Chiropractor

Chiropractors treat physical problems, such as back and neck painby manipulating various parts of the body, especially the spinal column.Most chiropractors work in a solo or group chiropractic practice. A large number are self-employed.

Entry-Level Education:Doctoral or professional degree

Annual median salary: $66,160

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 28%


7. Speech Pathologist

Speech pathologists diagnose and treat speech, language and communication disorders. Additionally, they work with patients having swallowing difficulties due to strokes or brain injuries. They work full time and almost half work in schools.

Entry-Level Education:Master’s degree

Annual median salary: $69,870

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 23%


8. Pharmacist

Pharmacists dispense prescription medications to patients and provide 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.

Pharmacists work in pharmacies, including those in grocery and drug stores. They also provide services in hospitals and clinics.

Entry-Level Education:Doctoral or professional degree

Annual median salary: $116,670

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 25%


9. Podiatrist

Podiatrists diagnose and treat problems of the feet, through corrective devices, medication, therapy, and surgery. Most podiatrists are self-employed or work in group practices with other physicians or specialists. Others work in private and public hospitals and outpatient care centers.

Entry-Level Education:Doctoral or professional degree

Annual median salary: $116,440

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 20%



10. Respiratory Therapist

They assist patients who have breathing difficulties due tocardiopulmonary (heart and lung) ailments.The respiratory therapists can be seen working in medical environments including hospitals, nursing homes or home health care agencies.

Entry-Level Education:Associate’s degree

Annual median salary: $55,870

BLS projected growth (through 2020): 28%


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