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Top reasons a career in healthcare is highly fulfilling

by Juan D. Vanpelt

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There are a wide variety of careers in healthcare that might appeal to you, from working as a Registered Nurse or physician to specialist jobs such as a midwife, speech therapist, ultrasound technician or radiologist. There are also various support roles in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, as well as jobs in the community supporting the health and well-being of various groups and individuals. Regardless of your specific role, many healthcare jobs have some things in common that tend to make them a lot more fulfilling than many other jobs.

Job satisfaction

Many healthcare workers find that a major benefit of pursuing a career in health is how satisfying and rewarding it can be. Regardless of your job role or area of specialization, you will be involved in supporting, helping, healing and comforting patients, often when they are sick, injured or going through major life transitions, such as pregnancy and childbirth or recovery from major injuries.

Many healthcare workers find it extremely satisfying to realize how much of a positive impact they have on their patients’ lives, both on a day-to-day basis and in the long term. For people with a caring disposition who derive satisfaction from helping others and knowing they played a part in their recovery, working in healthcare can give you a sense of purpose and a feeling of intense satisfaction.

Being appreciated

While healthcare workers may often feel that they work long hours and put a lot of energy and emotion into the job, this is often appreciated by patients and their families. It can feel wonderful when they express that appreciation, whether that is with words of thanks, actions, notes or perhaps even small gifts of appreciation.

There are even days set aside to appreciate some hard-working healthcare workers, such as National Nurses Day, which was established in the 1980s to honor and recognize the amazing work that nurses do. Although institutions like Baylor University honor nurses every day by offering them online degree programs that help them advance in this rewarding career path, it is nice to have more widespread acknowledgement, National Nurses Day is held on the first day of National Nurses Week, which takes place from May 6 to May 12 each year and concludes on International Nurses Day, which is the birthday of Florence Nightingale.

Constant growth

Most healthcare professionals do not stop learning when they qualify for their chosen career. There are many opportunities for formal and informal training, learning, and professional and personal growth. It is not unusual for nurses, physician’s assistants, and other healthcare workers to enter the workforce with an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree and continue to study while working, perhaps completing a Master’s Degree, Doctorate or other advanced professional qualification.

Healthcare workers in support roles will often find there are plenty of opportunities to learn more, both on the job and through formal education and training, perhaps adding new specialist skills and knowledge areas as they progress. The healthcare industry is fast-paced and dynamic, and it is unlikely that you will be bored at work or feel a lack of challenge as you might in an office job or another routine environment. You will be learning new things and gaining new experiences on a daily basis in a healthcare career.

Career opportunities

Healthcare is a growing industry, and there are various career opportunities in a wide range of settings, from hospitals, hospices and nursing homes to schools and specialized clinics. There is also the chance to specialize in working with children, the elderly, or those with specific chronic illnesses to manage. You may want to work with patients focusing on rehabilitation after injury or recovery after serious illness, or perhaps in preventative healthcare, administering vaccinations, conducting health screenings or educating people on how to avoid health issues.

There is an entire segment of the healthcare industry that is focused on helping women during conception, pregnancy and childbirth, along with a sector that focuses exclusively on mental health. In short, there is a diverse range of career opportunities and the possibility of working in a similar role in different specialties or sectors if you choose.

Many healthcare careers require only a limited amount of re-training if you want to move from one job role to another, and there is also the opportunity for geographic mobility. Although many healthcare roles require state certification or licensure, this will often be recognized in a different state, and even in a different country, if you wish to relocate.

Job security

There is a strong demand for healthcare workers nationwide and it is generally considered a growth industry, with new jobs becoming available all the time. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a job growth of 40% between 2021 and 2031 in the job roles of nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, and nurse practitioners, for example. This indicates much faster than average growth, and this is a trend that can be seen in other areas of the healthcare industry as well.

Although job security does not always ensure that a career is fulfilling, it can help you to enjoy your work if you are secure in your job and aware that there are plenty of opportunities available to you within your chosen career field.

Competitive salary and benefits

The salary and benefits available to workers in the healthcare industry vary greatly depending on your job role and the amount of education and experience you have. However, wages and benefits are generally good. Although pay alone does not lead to more fulfillment in your job, it can be very helpful when it comes to being able to focus on your work and not worry about the low wages or lack of benefits that are an issue in so many jobs in other sectors.

Working in healthcare can be a highly fulfilling and rewarding career choice that allows workers to feel a sense of purpose and the satisfaction that they are having a positive impact on the people they serve. It is certainly a sector worth considering if you are looking for a rewarding career.

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