How Do We See The Future Of The Medical Workforce
The world is changing right before our own eyes. The country is changing, cities are changing, and industries are changing too. One of the industries that’s altered the most by recent technological advancements over the last ten years is the healthcare industry. We have an aging population, and this population is expected to be around for a much longer time than in the past. That means we need more health care professionals to meet this growing demand.
What kind of doctors and health professionals will we actually need tomorrow? More importantly, what jobs will they have? How will technology change these roles for good, and how will they stay the same? These are all big topics we should all be thinking about. The healthcare industry is the USA’s top employer, and that means it’s something to pay close attention to, especially in the next few years.
So how exactly can we see this workforce changing? We know for certain that it will continue to grow, but on what scale? What does this growth mean? This article will break down the ways we’ll see a continued boom in the healthcare industry, and how this growth will lead to new challenges for the entire society.
Healthcare is Growing Fast
How fast? Faster than any other industry, by several paces. By 2022, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates its growth to reach almost 26%. What’s driving this demand? It’s all about the population. Our country is experiencing a population boom. We’re expected to grow our population by over 10% in just a decade. Not only will we need more service providers in all industries, but we’ll need a new generation of healthcare professionals to assist with the aging people.
People are living longer than ever. Baby Boomers, one of the largest generations thus far, are steadily reaching their golden years. They’re the generation with the highest health care needs, and these needs will only continue to grow as more of them reach retirement and beyond. New positions are opening to fill these needs.
Another reason for the steady growth is the rise in chronic conditions. Obesity, diabetes, and other chronic problems are becoming more common not only in aging populations but also in the general population. That means there’s a need for more researchers and health professionals of all levels to offer more care to those who need it.
Finally, technology is introducing new positions into the industry. While past positions were mainly for those who worked hands-on with patients, now we need people to help with management, technology, and research. This includes scientists, engineers, and healthcare managers, all who will be able to apply their unique skills to this industry.
Increased Demand to Fill Entry-Level Positions
Healthcare jobs come in all shapes and sizes. While most people believe all healthcare jobs are high-paying, that’s not always the case. Many starting positions don’t require extensive training or education, and these can pay significantly lower than their counterpart positions at the same facilities.
Entry-level positions include nursing assistants, physician assistants, dental hygienist, and in-home aides. The need to fill these positions is vast. Look at these Physician Assistant Job Offers that open constantly across the country. It’s clear that as more patients age and enter in-home and facility care center, there’s a need for qualified individuals to offer assistance.
These entry-level positions after often passed up in favor of registered nursing or more specialized positions, but they’re just as in need. The future of healthcare will need to push more new students to look into these lower-level roles as they pursue their education. They can be a great introduction to the world of healthcare, and they provide hands-on experience with patients.
The Rise of Digital Healthcare
You can see digital healthcare in action on your own smartphone. New apps launch every day that offers patients unique services all with the click of a few buttons. As these apps gain in popularity, the industry will continue to need healthcare professionals willing to think outside the box.
Popular apps you can use today include MDLive, TalkSpace, and Nurx. MDLive allows patients to speak to a physician through smartphone call or video. This is a new way to give people from across the nation access to affordable services while still providing quality care. TalkSpace is a mental health app that connects patients with mental health professionals around the country for a fraction of the cost of traditional healthcare. Finally, Nurx gives women the ability to order custom birth control all in an app.
All of these apps give health professionals a new way to interact with patients and make money remotely. While patients would have to directly visit a clinic or practice to receive treatment in the past, that’s clearly changing today. This freedom is something that we haven’t seen before, and it gives healthcare workers more control over how they work with patients.
Future of The Medical Workforce
There’s no denying that the healthcare industry is changing rapidly. Not only is there a greater demand for better, more comprehensive care, but there is also a greater demand for more professionals in the industry. The rising generation of Millennials and Generation Z offer a unique combination of tech savviness and education. These young people are more mindful of their impact on the world, and they might be the solution to the growing demand we’ve been looking for.
Companies will need to find new ways to attract these members of younger generations. While freedom in the workplace, technological advancements, and the reputation of healthcare companies will all play a role in attracting new healthcare professionals, it’s not the end of the road. These new issues will all affect the world we age into. Because of this, the healthcare industry is something we should all be concerned about as a country.
Together, we can make sure our tomorrow is as healthy as it is uplifting. Healthcare demands are growing, but so is our ability to meet new challenges. The next healthcare heroes are in this new generation, and who knows what answers they’ll bring with them.