Today’s Fastest Growing Allied Healthcare Professions

woman healthcare professional

Even before COVID-19, opportunities in the healthcare field were growing faster than most other areas of the U.S. economy.

According to a recent report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in the healthcare sector is expected to grow by about 2.6 million jobs between 2020 and 2030 – an average growth rate of 16%.

Some jobs are expected to grow even further. Allied health roles such as occupational therapy assistant, physical therapy assistant, speech-language pathologist and others are poised to grow by 30% or more over the next several years. These and some other fast-growing allied health careers typically require an associate or bachelor’s degree – and the salary payoff can be worth it.

Here are five examples of today’s fastest growing Allied health careers: 

Occupational Therapy Assistant

An occupational therapy assistant works with occupational therapists to help their clients recover activities of daily living—such as getting dressed and working—following an accident, illness, or other debilitating issue. These assistants usually work in offices, hospitals and nursing homes. The BLS forecasts a 34% growth in this field over the next several years.

Physical Therapy Assistant

A physical therapy assistant is often confused with an occupational therapy assistant but the jobs have significant differences. While both fields involve rehabilitating clients following illness or injury, physical therapy focuses on improving the movement of the human body – helping a patient better perform the various activities of daily living. The job outlook is strong, with some reports expecting a 32% increase in employment of PT assistants through the current decade. 

Speech-Language Pathologist

The aging Baby Boomer population is a factor in the strong predicted growth of careers in the Speech-Language Pathologist field. As this sector of the population gets older, there will be more instances of health conditions such as strokes and dementia that can cause speech and language impairments.

According to the BLS, employment of Speech-Language Pathologists is expected to grow 29% this decade. A master’s degree is required for Speech-Language Pathologists, and a bachelor’s degree in a related field is required for admission into a speech-language pathology master’s program.

Health Information Manager

If data and technology are your sweet spots, a career in Health Information Management (HIM) may be for you. A Health Information Manager is adept in the business aspects of healthcare and typically oversees health information systems to ensure that they meet medical, legal and ethical standards.

As electronic health records become universally used, health information professionals will be more and more in demand. An associate degree in Health Information Management is a good first step to a career in the HIM field.

Physician Assistant

Physician assistants offer medical services under the direction of licensed doctors. Working with other healthcare specialists, assistants administer supervised preventative health, therapeutic, and diagnostic services, record medical histories, set up and review x rays and laboratory tests, and more. Physician assistants are often the primary medical providers in inner-city or rural facilities where doctors cannot always be present.

Job growth for physician assistants is projected to increase over 30% in this decade, making this a rapidly growing and secure profession. 

i4 Search Group – Recruiting Healthcare Heroes since 2019. We’re a permanent placement recruiting firm specializing in healthcare recruiting across North America. If you’re a nursing, allied health, or any other healthcare professional looking for your next career move, visit our website and see how our experienced team of professionals can help you find a great position in 2021.

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