Due to projected shortages in many health career positions, more and more programs are becoming flexible in their educational requirements and have fast track pathways for persons having some previous education.
Most tend to think of doctors, nurses and dentists when they think of health careers. But most people employed in the health field are clinical and administrative healthcare professionals (“allied health” professionals). They perform diagnostic, technical, and therapeutic jobs, as well as direct patient care and support services.
Some examples of jobs in allied health include histotechnology, health information management technology, medical laboratory technology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, radiologic technology, respiratory therapy, and speech-language pathology.
The prior education or degree doesn’t always have to be in the same field either. For example, a Bachelor of Science in Biology or Chemistry often fulfills the majority of the requirements to become a Medical Laboratory Technician or Medical Technologist. Often taking a course or two will allow someone to enter a program of their choice without having to take the entire curriculum.
Many health career positions allow varying educational pathways to receive the certification or registration necessary to work in these positions. For instance to become a Registered Nurse, the educational preparation may be an associate, bachelor’s degree, or a diploma from an accredited program. There are a few other excellent ways to achieve your goal of becoming an RN if you are a Certified Nursing Assistant/Aide, a medical assistant, or a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse.
The same holds true for Radiologic Technologist, Medical Laboratory Technician and Medical Technologist positions. Each profession has specific criteria that outline the requirements for persons of various backgrounds and degrees to pursue their specific health career professional designation.