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Beyond doctors and nurses: different medical careers

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When people think about a career in healthcare, they often focus mainly on doctors and nurses. Shows like ER, Scrubs, House and Grey’s Anatomy really do glamorise these particular jobs, but there are countless jobs in the medical field beyond these. While some are patient-facing, others require you to work in a different type of environment and many don’t require the same high level of training involved in the most high profile jobs. So, let’s look closer at some different medical careers that you could take up.


Pharmacy refers to the science of preparing and dispensing medicinal drugs. To go into this sort of career, you usually need to complete a four year degree programme before learning more on the job. However, within this sector, you can also become a pharmacy technician. They work closely with pharmacists when filling prescriptions, mixing medications and distributing medicine out to patients. Beyond the hospital environment, there is also the option to work in various other different areas including grocery stores and department stores. Having a high level of attention to detail and customer service skills is important if you are planning to enter this career.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy is another area that involves getting a full undergraduate degree to enter at the top level, but you can often enter at the assistant level as well. Another patient-facing role, this involves monitoring patients during their therapy, helping them to exercise and monitoring their progress as they go through the course that has been set for them. Empathy, stamina and good interpersonal skills are all things that you will need to possess. An associated career that also may interest you is chiropractics and a chiropractor salary may not be what you expected so it is worth looking into. Again, this is all about helping people with pain so they can enjoy a better standard of living.

Medical Administration

Any environment like a hospital requires a high level of administration which is where this particular job role fits in. People who work in this field are often tasked with billing, interacting with patients and scheduling procedures. This type of work is ideal if you are a very organised person who enjoys operating in a fast-paced environment. A lot of training will be done on the job and it takes time to adjust to the requirements of the role.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational therapy delves deeper into the complex task of helping patients who have more permanent disabilities. At an assistant level, you would be tasked with monitoring patient progress, helping to improve coordination, and helping out with the therapeutic activities which have been set. Some of the most common working environments include hospitals, nursing homes and practitioner offices.

These are just four potential areas that you can go into if you are looking for a career in healthcare but are looking for something else beyond the traditional doctor or nurse job. Hard work, empathy and commitment are all qualities that will serve you will regardless.    

Are you considering a medical career other than a doctor or nurse? 

Career CamelBeyond doctors and nurses: different medical careers

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