While a record number of students applied to medical schools this year, there’s demand on the jobs side of the equation for skilled nonclinical workers like patient liaisons and office specialists.
Changes in care delivery spawned by technology, healthcare reform and an aging population have emphasized the importance of healthcare teams. As a result, more responsibility is being funneled to non-clinical positions, says the College for America at Southern New Hampshire University.
A new jobs analysis put together by College for America researchers highlights six of these fast-growing healthcare jobs.
- Medical office specialists – Also referred to as medical secretaries, they perform secretarial duties that require a knowledge of medical terminology and hospital, clinic or laboratory procedures.
- Medical assistants – Tasked with scheduling appointments, maintaining medical records and billing, recording vital signs and medical histories, and preparing patients for examination.
- Office supervisors – Oversee and coordinate the day-to-day activities of a hospital, physician office or clinic. That might include coordinating staff meetings, handling patient complaints and supervising medical records workers.
- Community health workers – Serve as a liaison between individuals in a community and their local healthcare and social service providers through outreach and educational programming.
- Medical records technicians – Responsible for compiling, processing and maintaining patient medical records, which might include coding.
- Patient representatives – A relatively new position growing in importance because of continued efforts around coordinated care. Patient navigators work at hospitals, clinics or nonprofit organizations to connect patients with research and information on their condition, address insurance issues and help them stay connected with their doctors.
College for America, an online program for associate degrees, put together the report based on market data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and O*Net Online as well as real-time job listings and feedback from healthcare administrators nationwide. Read the full report here.
[Image credit: College for America at Southern New Hampshire University]