Working in the healthcare industry is such a rewarding job. You’ll be spending every day saving people’s lives and helping the local community. That’s great, but if you’re particularly squeamish and you don’t like blood, you won’t get on well as a doctor. If you’re a working on the front lines, you’ll have to deal with a lot of gruesome stuff and if you don’t have the stomach for it, it’s not the career for you. But that doesn’t mean you have to give up on your dream of helping people because doctors are only one small part of a hospital and there are all sorts of other important roles. Every single person that works in a hospital is contributing so even if you aren’t directly treating people, you’re still an important part of the organization and you’ll get the satisfaction that comes with healthcare jobs. If you want to help sick people get better but you can’t stomach the daily duties of a doctor, here are some great alternatives.
When somebody comes in with a serious injury, it’ll be the doctors that operate on them and fix the problem. Then it falls to the nurses to help them while they recover from the surgery. But the job isn’t finished once that patient goes home because they’ll have to learn how to adjust to normal life again and get their body back to full working order. That’s where occupational therapists come in. It will be your job to help people regain mobility and learn how to do all of the day to day tasks that might be difficult following an injury. It’s a hugely rewarding job because you’ll get to watch their progression as they regain their independence and you’ll be making a real positive change to somebody’s life. Often you’ll be working with people that have had limbs amputated and helping them to adjust to their new life, or you might be helping people learn to use muscles that they haven’t used for a while because they’ve been confined to a bed. Due to the aging population, the need for good occupational therapists is on the increase which means there will be plenty of work out there if you decide to go down this route. You’ll need to earn an associates degree before you can start finding jobs but the good news is, the average pay is quite high ($57,000 a year) for a job of that level.
If getting another degree isn’t feasible for you but you’re still interested in the work that an occupational therapist does, you can get a job as an assistant to an occupational therapist. You’ll be handling some of the paperwork and admin around the job but you’ll still be involved in treating patients.
If you want a job where you can make real changes in the hospital without having to get involved with the actual care itself, healthcare administration is the perfect fit for you. Healthcare administrators are the people that oversee departments and make sure that they’re all running smoothly. Even though you’re not operating on patients directly, the decisions that you make will have a big impact on the level of care that patients get. A well-oiled department is going to improve the level of care that people are getting and that’s an incredibly rewarding feeling. You’ll need to get a bs healthcare administration degree before you can start applying for positions but you can do it online in your spare time if you don’t want to go back into education full-time. That’s often a better option for people that are changing career in later life.
Nursing lands somewhere in between these other jobs and being a fully fledged doctor. You will have to deal with some of the medical stuff but it’s not going to be anywhere near as bad as operating on people etc. Being a good nurse is more about offering basic care and tending to people’s needs while they recover. You’ll have to administer medication and help patients wash themselves etc. but you aren’t going to be involved in any of the more gruesome stuff. There is a huge demand for nurses so you’re always going to be able to find work fairly easily. The other major benefit of working as a nurse is that the shifts are quite flexible so you can work when it suits you, making it the perfect job for people with other commitments like family.
Working at a hospital isn’t all about blood and guts, there are plenty of other ways that you can make a real difference to people’s lives.