Healthcare Jobs Rule in Terms of Pay and Demand

Michele Warg
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The launch of the Affordable Care Act and the implementation of new healthcare policies have dramatically changed the landscape of the healthcare professions. Healthcare jobs have been on the rise for some time in terms of pay and demand, and the Affordable Care Act has caused skyrocketing wages due to an increased need to fill healthcare jobs.

High-paying healthcare jobs can deliver annual salaries in excess of $200,000, especially for those in highly technical fields, such as surgery. High demand for surgeons and anesthesiologists makes them very valuable to hospitals, which are willing to pay more for skilled and trained professionals. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons and orthodontists also top the charts when it comes to high pay. The average salaries for these high-end jobs and their high market demand make them smart choices for those who are looking to switch specializations or begin new careers in the healthcare field.

The addition of many more insured Americans to the healthcare market has also dramatically increased demand for many more generalized healthcare jobs. There is especially high demand for family medicine specialists, who often see patients for a variety of conditions. Demand is also high for nurse practitioners, who fulfill many of the duties of a doctor in smaller clinics or rural areas. Salaries for professionals in these fields can approach those of surgeons, though the average falls a bit short by about $20,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Some of the best healthcare jobs are in preventative care and support fields. Dentists still command high salaries, and the profession is ranked as the number-one healthcare job in America according to U.S. News and World Report. The field of dentistry continues to grow by leaps and bounds, as Americans desire bright smiles and keep their teeth healthy well into their later years.

Baby boomers and other elderly patients are likely to rely on the assistance of pharmacists, just as younger patients do. U.S. News and World Report ranked pharmacists third in its list of the best jobs in the field of healthcare. Pharmacists have one of the top healthcare jobs due to their invaluable advice and expertise. Salaries for pharmacists tend to fall in the area of $116,500 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with dentists receiving annual wages of around $165,000.

Healthcare jobs benefit from increased demand that allows professionals in the field to command higher salaries. Those looking to enter the healthcare field should consider specialized roles as surgeons or anesthetists if they are looking for excellent wages. More generalized positions, such as nurse practitioners and general practice physicians, are also greatly in demand. The best healthcare jobs to hold, as ranked U.S. News and World Report, lie in dentistry and pharmacy.

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