Healthcare Career Trends In A Post-Covid World

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Although Covid-19 is likely to prove transformational for many industries, it is the healthcare sector that will witness the biggest changes. From fixing supply chains to ramping up the manufacturing of hospital equipment, to addressing the need for more hospital beds, the entire healthcare system is likely to undergo a revamp in the coming years to make it better equipped to deal with emergencies.

As a result, youngsters with a desire to carve out careers in this sector will need to learn new skills that are more suitable to an overhauled industry. Below we discuss some of the major changes which the industry is likely to witness, while analysing their impact on jobs and careers.

Types of Jobs in Healthcare

The healthcare industry comprises more than just medical professions such as doctors, nurses and health specialists, to encompass a wide variety of technical and administrative staff who help keep medical establishments running. Here is a list of different types of people who work in the healthcare industry. Note that the list is only indicative; many professions have been left out due to lack of space.

Clinical Healthcare

  • Doctor
  • Nurse
  • Microbiologist
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Audiologist
  • Optometrist
  • Orthodontist
  • Paramedic
  • Pharmacist

Support Healthcare

  • Dietitian/Nutritionist
  • Exercise Physiologist
  • Certified Medical Assistant
  • Certified Nurse Assistant
  • Dental Hygienist
  • Home Health Aide
  • Massage Therapist
  • Radiation Therapist

Administrative Jobs

  • Receptionist
  • Billing Manager
  • Accountant
  • Admissions Clerk
  • Administrative Medical Assistant
  • Claims Specialist
  • Health Facilities Surveyor
  • Hospital Administrator
  • IT Manager
  • Transcriptionist

Career Trends in a Post-Pandemic Scenario

The healthcare industry has been directly impacted by Covid-19 leading to some far-reaching changes. Below we highlight some of the major trends and discuss their impact on healthcare jobs.

1. Familiarity with telehealth

Arguably the greatest impact of the pandemic has been the fillip it has given to alternate healthcare delivery models such as telehealth. According to some estimates, the pandemic has accelerated telehealth adoption by about 10 years. Future doctors and healthcare providers must necessarily be conversant in telehealth owing to its growing popularity among patients, hospitals and stakeholders. Apart from the technological aspect they must also familiarise themselves with the telemedicine practice guidelines of the state/province to ensure full legal compliance.

2. New opportunities in manufacturing and pharmaceuticals

The pandemic has exposed the pitfalls of completely relying on offshore supply chains, with the procurement of healthcare equipment and medicines from overseas facing disruption due to lockdowns as well as the diversion of critical supplies to the domestic market.

As a result, we can expect to see the ramping up of domestic production of healthcare equipment and pharmaceuticals, leading to the establishment of new manufacturing units, giving a spurt to job creation. This presents a huge opportunity for youngsters with no medical training to get involved in the extended healthcare industry through jobs in manufacturing and pharmaceuticals.

3. Demand for marketing executives

Going forward, a key objective for hospitals will be getting patients back to their premises for outdoor consultations and elective surgeries by focussing on the Covid-free status of hospitals/wards/consultation chambers. This will put the spotlight on disinfection, but also on marketing to disseminate information on the safety and hygiene measures adopted by the hospital. As a result, marketing jobs may witness increased hiring in the future.

4. Demand for home-based care

The pre-pandemic thinking favoured the idea of nursing homes and assisted living facilities where medical care and related services were available round the clock for patients. But the pandemic exposed the weaknesses of this model, ripping through these institutions housing the most vulnerable people, leaving thousands dead in its wake.

The future may see a rise in home-based care arising from the need to avoid crowded medical facilities to prevent the spread of infection. Professions such as home health aide, personal care aide, along with nurses, therapists, geriatric and palliative care providers etc. may witness a rise in demand as a result. If you are thinking about a healthcare career, it could be worthwhile to explore home-based opportunities given the potential that lies in this arena.

Flexibility is the Key

We could also witness new rules regarding healthcare preparedness that enable us to deal with emergencies in a more organised manner. It may take various forms such the hiring of higher numbers of workers dedicated to contact tracing, the creation of communities of paramedical staff and health specialists which can be help during a public health crisis, and so on. Each of these measures could open up new horizons for youngsters and job seekers. A flexible approach and openness to change will be critical in enabling candidates to utilise these opportunities to advance their career.

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