Interested in Health Care? These 15 Jobs Pay More Than $50,000 a Year

Interested in working in the health field? Even if you’re not sure you could stand being a doctor or nurse, there are plenty of other options out there. The highest paying health care jobs don’t all involve working directly with patients. Whether you’re good with technology (page 10), a pro in business management (page 6), or you love research (page 8), there’s likely a job in the field for you with a decent salary to match.

Here are just a few of the positions you could hold in health care, with the right education, training, and dedication.

15. Health information manager

Female doctor hold clipboard pad and fill medical history

People with this job oversee medical records. | megaflopp/Getty Images

Health information managers oversee the collecting, keeping, and releasing of medical records. As managers, they usually supervise multiple staff members in their department.

A bachelor’s degree in information management or related program in health information administration will prepare you for this role.

Next: These clinical experts often decide what a patient eats while in the hospital.

14. Clinical dietitian

nutritionist working at desk and writing medical records

Dietitians help patients with their diet. | iStock.com/demaerre

Clinical dietitians work in hospital settings to assess, prescribe, and provide information and recommendations related to patient diets.

Entry-level dietitians can enter the field after earning an undergraduate degree and completing a year-long internship, but a master’s degree in nutrition is usually preferred.

Next: These technicians use their skills to help diagnose health problems.

13. Diagnostic medical sonographer

sonogram

Sonographers do more than tell expectant parents their baby’s gender. | Zilli/iStock/Getty Images

Ultrasound technology goes beyond determining the gender or health of a baby. Diagnostic medical sonographers also use it to diagnose a variety of medical conditions.

Most health care professionals trained to use this imaging technology have completed a professional certification on top of an undergraduate degree in math or science. Many learn the skill on the job.

Next: People who want to know if they’re at risk for a certain disease go to these professionals.

12. Genetic counselor

Woman Discussing Problems With Counselor

A genetic counselor might talk to someone about their breast cancer risk. | iStock.com/Highwaystarz-Photography

Genetic counselors help patients determine their risk of diseases like cancer based on family history and blood tests. They’re skilled in interpreting lab results and making related recommendations.

Becoming a genetic counselor requires a master’s degree in genetics or genetic counseling, plus passing a board exam in most states.

Next: These professionals fit patients for hearing aids, and much more.

11. Audiologist

Doctor examining patients ear

These professionals treat patients with hearing loss. | Martin Barraud/Getty Images

Audiologists specialize in treating patients with hearing loss and balance issues, such as those diagnosed with vertigo.

After completing an undergraduate degree, obtaining a four-year doctoral degree in audiology allows these professionals to practice in this area of health care.

Next: These professionals take care of all the behind-the-scenes work at a hospital or clinic.

10. Health care administrator

Handshake

Health care administrators often have a master’s degree in business. | Ijeab/iStock/Getty Images

Health care administrators are in charge of an entire medical facility, handling business affairs such as coordinating marketing strategies and making sure all hospital staff are happy and doing their jobs to the best of their ability.

Most health care administrators hold a master’s degree in business with a health care concentration.

Next:  These therapists treat physical ailments and pain.

9. Physical therapist

Physical therapist

A physical therapist works with patients who have sustained injuries. | iStock/Getty Images

Physical therapists treat patients who have sustained injuries that interfere with their mobility or cause severe pain, such as stress fractures in athletes.

Anyone who wants to become a physical therapist must first complete a relevant bachelor’s degree before entering a three-year doctoral degree.

Next: It’s up to this person to develop the equipment health care professionals use every day.

8. Biomedical engineer

Researcher is analyzing test tube with Malaria

Biomedical engineers are developing new ways to treat and cure illnesses and diseases. | iStock.com/vchal

Biomedical engineers design medical equipment to help prescribe, treat, and cure illnesses and diseases through research and development.

You can work in the field with a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering, or obtain a master’s degree or on-the-job training with an undergraduate degree in a different type of engineering.

Next: These nurses undergo special training to do more specialized work.

7. Advanced practice nurse

a female nurse in blue scrubs from the neck down, with a stethoscope around her neck, holding a piece of paper and a pen

These nurses are specialists in their field. | Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Advanced practice registered nurses are specialists in their field. Depending on their specialty, some assist doctors during surgery or prescribe treatments and medications.

To become an advance practice nurse, you must complete a bachelor’s degree in an accredited nursing program and complete a certification in the specialty of your choosing.

Next: These people protect your personal health information from hackers.

6. Information security analyst

Senior working on computer

Keeping patient records secure is critical. | DragonImages/iStock/Getty Images

Patient medical records contain extremely sensitive personal information. Information security analysts often work with hospital systems to protect these records against cyberattacks.

These analysts need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field, and preferably work experience in information technology.

Next: These vital medical professionals support doctors and surgeons every step of the way.

5. Physician assistant

Visiting a doctor

A physician assistant works under the supervision of a doctor. | Nensuria/iStock/Getty Images

These professionals perform similar tasks to doctors, but must work under the supervision of or in collaboration with a doctor or surgeon.

Prospective physician assistants must complete a 26-month master’s program, pass a certification exam, and obtain a license to practice in the state they plan on working in.

NextThe anatomy of this organ takes a long time to master if you want to help treat it.

4. Optometrist

Checking eyesight

An optometrist diagnoses eye propblems like farsightedness. | Denis_prof/iStock/Getty Images

Optometrists perform eye exams to diagnose problems like far-sightedness and diseases like glaucoma. They can prescribe everything from contacts to medications.

You’ll need a bachelor’s degree and a Doctor of Optometry at minimum to practice in this particular area of health care.

Next: These people help keep patients alive while doctors operate on them.

3. Perfusionist

Operation room surgery

This little-known career has a six-figure salary. | Hin255/iStock/Getty Images

Perfusionists work alongside surgeons in operating rooms to monitor a patient’s circulatory system as needed, often administering medications and monitoring the temperature of blood.

Some aspiring perfusionists complete a bachelor’s degree and certification program. Others obtain a relevant master’s degree.

Next: These professionals make sure patients are taking their medications correctly.

2. Pharmacist

Rosemary Petty, a Publix Supermarket pharmacy technician, counts out a prescription of antibiotic pills

Pharmacists dispense medications and answer patient questions. | Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Pharmacists dispense medications, but they also instruct patients on how to take them, answer questions, and make sure the medicines they’ve been prescribed won’t interact with other drugs they’re already taking.

Pharmacists must complete up to a four-year doctoral degree.

Next: This high-paying job also requires more than 10 years of advanced education.

1. General surgeon

surgery

Surgeons are the best-paid health care professionals. | Mahmoud Zayyat/AFP/Getty Images

General surgeons diagnose and treat a variety of diseases and illnesses through operations. These surgeries might range from repairing damaged organs to repairing broken bones.

While it’s the highest-paying job on this list, it also requires the most education. Surgeons must complete a total of 12 years of post-secondary education to practice this advanced type of medicine.

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